An attorney for the Bedford school district said he believes a former athlete who was awarded nearly $1 million Monday was not injured as a result of football contact.
A jury in U.S. District Court in Des Moines found a Bedford school nurse negligent when Kacey Strough was allowed to return to competition in 2012 after demonstrating signs of a potential concussion or head injury. In addition, the jury said the school did not adequately notify Strough’s family to seek proper medical treatment for him.
Strough, who underwent surgery and now uses a wheelchair, had a pre-existing “cavernous malformation,” or abnormally formed blood vessels in his brain.
The attorney for Bedford, Gregory Barntsen, disputed Strough’s assertion that the injuries were football-related in an email to the Register.
“I believe the evidence presented at trial indicated that Kacey Strough had a spontaneous bleed of his cavernous malformation that was not due to his being hit in the head with the football or by contact during football practice,” Barntsen wrote.
Barntsen wrote that two neurosurgeons testified at the trial that it was more likely the bleed was spontaneous and not due to trauma, as Strough alleged.
Iowa adopted a student-athlete concussion and brain injury law in 2011.