Coliseum Conflict 

Mid-South Coliseum patron claims beating by security guards.

Ian Cobb showed up at the Mid-South Coliseum on October 24th expecting to enjoy a Widespread Panic concert, but according to a lawsuit recently filed by his attorney Greg Hays, he left bruised and bloodied after being assaulted by members of the Coliseum's security team.

According to the claim, which was filed on January 14th, Cobb was enjoying the show from a special floor area that he had purchased tickets to access. He spotted another concert-goer climbing over a safety wall into the area. When he noticed security guards headed in that person's direction, he walked over to warn the person to get down. The person got off the wall and began to walk away with Cobb.

The guards allegedly ran up behind Cobb and grabbed him by the back of the shirt. The suit states that they then began punching him in the face and upper torso. At that point, his brother ran to the scene and warned guards that Cobb was a hemophiliac, a condition that prevents blood clotting and causes excessive bleeding. The lawsuit states that the guards continued to beat Cobb and rammed him into a wall. They then threw him over the wall and into a concrete barrier.

"The bottom line is, we don't know why he was attacked," said Hays. "I assume the guards confused him with somebody else or something. [The Coliseum management has] not communicated with us on this suit at this time." Steve Fox, manager of the Coliseum, did not return phone calls to the Flyer.

According to Hays, Cobb was treated by an emergency medical technician employed by the Coliseum but was denied access to an ambulance. Once he was allowed to leave, he sought further medical help. Cobb is suing the Coliseum staff, Fox, the city of Memphis, and Shelby County government for $600,000 in compensatory damages and $2 million in punitive damages.

"Ian's main point with this is that he wants people to know that when they go to the Coliseum, they need to beware," said Hays. "He was shocked that something like this would happen to him at a place he thought was safe, especially considering that it was done by the people who are supposed to be there to protect him."

E-mail: bphillips@memphisflyer.com

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