It’s been years of back and forth, but the case is now finally resolved. A Los Angeles jury ordered actress Sharon Stone to pay $232,000 to a man who says he was injured on her property in 2006.
This incident allegedly took place at Stone’s estate in the Los Angeles area, which in 1995, soon after becoming a megastar due to the hit movie “Basic Instinct”.
Stone planned to spend a couple of years expanding and refurbishing the 11,000 square-foot Mediterranean-style home (complete with a tennis court and a pool) before moving onto the property.
Peter Krause (not the actor by the same name) says he fell more than 15 feet into a ravine while installing outdoor wiring for a backyard sound system on her estate. Apparently, he tried to grab onto a lattice fence on top of a retaining wall. When the fence collapsed, he slid onto a neighbor’s adjoining property, seriously damaging his knee.
Because of the injury, he asserts that he’s been limited in his job prospects. Two years after this alleged incident, he filed the lawsuit against Stone.
Krause’s lawyer, John Torjesen, argued that Stone’s fence was in violation of a Los Angeles city code that requires property owners to have sturdy fences on their land.
When Stone testified in her own defense, she claimed that she always has had a chain-link fence surrounding her backyard. The implication was that this situation could never have happened. Her fence was not made of wood as the plaintiff had stated.
Furthermore, Stone informed the jury that she enjoys gardening so she examines her property often. She also claimed that she had no firsthand knowledge Krause was ever injured on her estate.
In addition to the case’s unusual nature, jury selection brought one of its most memorable moments. A potential juror claimed she couldn’t consider the circumstances in a neutral way because she has no respect for Stone’s work as an actress.
The judge ignored her request to be released and sent her back into the jury pool.
The jury deliberated for an entire day before determining that Stone was at fault. They concluded that her fence was indeed inadequate and held her responsible.
Originally, Krause had asked for $1.5 million, which included pain and suffering as well as lost wages.
While Stone’s attorney, Jerry Popovich, agreed that medical damages did come to $33,000, he argued that Krause shouldn’t receive more than $120,000 for the rest of his claims.
In the end, the jury decided that Stone should pay Krause $232,000 to compensate him for his injuries.
Popovich is currently considering an appeal.