E2 Settlement Opposed

An attorney representing Clear Channel Communications, the parent company of Chicago’s WGCI-FM, has objected to a proposed $1.5 million partial settlement between the owners of the city’s E2 nightclub, where 21 people died and 95 were injured during a crowd crush.

Attorney Michael Freeborn reportedly told Cook County Circuit Judge Kathy Flanagan April 19th that since Clear Channel Communications is not part of the settlement, the company could bear no more than its fair share of the responsibility for future damage claims.

Attorneys for the victims reportedly claim a WGCI disc jockey incited the stampede at the venue on February 17, 2003, by encouraging security guards to use pepper spray to break up a fight at the club.

In arguing why Flanagan shouldn’t approve the settlement, Freeborn said it would be unfair to leave Clear Channel and the City of Chicago as the only remaining defendants, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.

E2 owners previously agreed to pay $1.5 million to settle dozens of lawsuits brought on by victims and their families. Freeborn reportedly said Clear Channel was not invited to be part of the settlement.

Flanagan was scheduled to rule on May 10th whether to approve the settlement, according to Medill News Service.

In other action April 19th, E2 co-owner Dwain Kyles reportedly told Criminal Court Judge Dennis Porter that he wants to be tried separately from co-defendants Calvin Hollins Jr., Marco Flores and Calvin Hollins III.

Hollins Jr. was a co-owner with Kyles, Flores was the party promoter, and Hollins III was the club’s manager.

The judge reportedly scheduled a May 16th hearing.