Settlement reached in NJ HS football player death

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — The family of a New Jersey high school football player who died in 2008 after suffering a concussion reached a settlement with his school on Monday, according to an attorney for the family.

Beth Baldinger, an attorney for Ryne Dougherty’s family, said a $2.8 million settlement was reached with Montclair High School and the Montclair Board of Education. The Dougherty family hoped their son’s case would bring attention to the importance of properly managing concussions, Baldinger said.

The junior linebacker suffered a brain hemorrhage in an October 2008 game after he was prematurely returned to action following an earlier concussion, Baldinger said. She said the school’s athletic trainer had allegedly ignored the 16-year-old’s poor results on an impact test, disregarded rules about returning a concussed athlete to the field, and failed to make sure Dougherty had been 100 percent cleared before returning him to play.

“There were failures in the system all the way through,” Baldinger said.

Messages left for the school district’s attorney after-hours on Monday were not immediately returned.

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