Kick the Soccer Suit

The Madison County Record Oct. 5, 2008, 12:54pm

We see disputes every week in the Metro-East that have no business in court, and now comes the case of eleven year-old Alexis McCarthy, a soccer player who hurt her arm.

Inspired by Edwardsville plaintiff's lawyer Glenn E. Bradford, Alexis' mom Kristen filed suit this week in Madison County, seeking a judgment "in excess of" $150,000 from the Glen-Ed Soccer Club and the coach of an opposing team, Christopher Tracy.

Coach Tracy supposedly let an "older girl" play and "failed to advise her to play in such a manner that would not harm any other player on the opposing team."

The net result, according to the lawsuit, was an injury to Alexis that required "medical care and treatment."

It's unfortunate if the coach let an older girl play. We expect adults to demonstrate integrity and respect when coaching our children. It's too bad Alexis was injured playing soccer. Games can be rough, and no parent wants their own flesh and blood to get hurt.

But it seems most tragic that the suit comes almost a year after the fact-- the game was last November-- and that the McCarthy family thinks the best place to resolve its "dispute" is a Madison County courtroom.

We can assure you-- it isn't.

Perhaps the money beckons-- the possibility of $150,000 or more is a lot of change and can make even frivolous litigating tempting. But the McCarthys should consider that even if they succeed, money comes and goes. The trauma this lawsuit can exact upon both sides will linger forever.

First there is the defendant, the Glen Ed Soccer Club, and the hundreds of families it serves. The non-for-profit has to hire counsel and defend itself at the expense of the area children who participate in its leagues.

And then there's Alexis, the 11 year-old girl sadly caught in the middle of a needless firefight between angry adults. Here's wishing the "adults" come to their senses and find a better way for her sake.

Children expect adults, particularly parents, to lead by example. Where is this suit leading?

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