NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Just because a jury awarded Erin Andrews $55 million doesn’t mean the sportscaster and TV host can collect.
Jurors found her stalker 51 percent at fault for altering a peephole in a Nashville hotel room and then secretly shooting nude video of her.
That means he is now on the hook for $28.5 million. However, It’s unlikely that the former Chicago-area insurance executive will ever be able to pay that amount even if the verdict does stand.
Michael David Barrett was sentenced to 2 ½ years in prison after he admitted to stalking Andrews in three cities and altering hotel room peepholes and shooting videos in Nashville and Columbus, Ohio, and uploading them on the Internet. Barrett didn’t show up for trial. In videotaped deposition testimony played before the jury, Barrett said that he now lives with his father in Oregon and drives a meat and food truck.
Here are the outstanding issues and possible outcomes of the case:
WILL THEY PAY?
West End Hotel Partners, the owner of the Nashville Marriott at Vanderbilt, and Windsor Capital Group, the former operator of the hotel, have not said whether they will appeal the nearly $27 million award that the jury said they must pay. But with so much money at stake, there is likely to be a new fight, said John Day, a Nashville attorney who is not involved in the case.
THE COMPANIES’ OPTIONS
According to Day, the companies could ask Davidson County Circuit Court Judge Hamilton Gayden to lower the damages. If that doesn’t work, they could go to the Tennessee Court of Appeals. The companies could wind up paying more money, however, if they lose an appellate court showdown, because they would have to pay interest on the amount, beginning the day the jury issued its verdict.
It’s also possible that Andrews will agree to a lower settlement amount.