A jury ruled in favor of Gwyneth Paltrow on Thursday in a $300,000 negligence suit filed by a Utah man in 2019.
Terry Sanderson was determined to be “100 percent at fault” for the ski crash in 2016. He will be responsible for $1 in damages in addition to her attorney fees.
In a statement provided, Paltrow said, “I felt that acquiescing to a false claim compromised my integrity. I am pleased with the outcome and I appreciate all of the hard work of Judge [Kent] Holmberg and the jury and thank them for their thoughtfulness in handling this case.”
As Paltrow left court she touched Sanderson’s shoulder and said, “I wish you well,” Sanderson told reporters outside the courthouse, according to the Associated Press. He responded, “Thank you dear.”
Sanderson initially claimed that Paltrow left him with a “permanent traumatic brain injury” after she crashed into him from behind while skiing in 2016 at the Deer Valley Resort in Park City.
He initially filed a $3.1 million lawsuit against the actress, the exclusive resort and the ski instructor who was providing lessons to Paltrow’s son at the time of the accident. A judge dismissed the claim, and Deer Valley Resort and the instructor were removed from the lawsuit.
Sanderson then sued Paltrow for $300,000. She countersued for $1 and attorney fees.
The Academy Award-winner’s lawyer, Stephen Owens, also provided a statement to Fox News Digital: “We are pleased with this unanimous outcome and appreciate the judge and jury’s thoughtful handling of the case. Gwyneth has a history of advocating for what she believes in – this situation was no different and she will continue to stand up for what is right.”
Shortly after the jury was dismissed for deliberations, a lawyer representing various media outlets argued that a still camera and video camera should be allowed to capture the plaintiff, defendant and counsel’s reactions. The judge granted this motion.
Multiple expert witnesses – including neurologists, doctors and first responders – testified throughout the eight-day trial. Sanderson and Paltrow also took the stand.
Sanderson accused the Goop founder of not only crashing into him while skiing down the Bandana run on Flagstaff Mountain but also skiing off after the accident. The collision allegedly left him with a “permanent traumatic brain injury, four broken ribs, pain, suffering, loss of enjoyment of life,” along with emotional distress and disfigurement, according to the lawsuit.
Owens said the actress spent the last two weeks as a “punching bag” as she’s attended each day of the trial.
Sanderson’s lawyer, Lawrence Buhler, noted that his persistent concussion symptoms are permanent and reiterated that the case was “not about celebrity” but “about a man’s life.”
Paltrow’s children, Apple and Moses, were supposed to testify on behalf of their mother, but they did not appear in court due to time constraints. Their depositions were read in court.
Moses, who was 9 years old at the time of the collision, said in his deposition, “I did not see the actual collision.”
“I did not see it, but I recall the events following it,” Apple recalled. She said she was “11 or 12” at the time of the incident.
The “Shakespeare in Love” actress testified that she thought she was possibly being sexually assaulted when Sanderson crashed into her and that she was “extremely upset” after the collision.
“I was confused at first, and I didn’t know exactly what was happening. It’s a very strange thing to be happening on a ski slope,” she recalled. “I froze, and I would say I got very upset a couple seconds later.”
Paltrow said it felt like they were “spooning” when the two fell to the ground. She also said that she was not claiming she was sexually assaulted but rather that was “what went through [her] mind when it happened.”
She has maintained that Sanderson actually skied into her and that she stayed at the scene until given the OK to leave by a Deer Valley Resort ski instructor. The 50-year-old actress also said in her countersuit that Sanderson previously admitted he didn’t have a clear memory of the accident.
Sanderson previously suffered a stroke and had limited function in his right eye prior to the ski crash.
The jury heard from two of Sanderson’s three daughters during the trial. Polly Grasham and Shae Herath both testified about changes they observed in their father’s personality since the ski collision.
Owens reconciled with his courtroom actions at one point and was forced to apologize to Grasham after a heated cross-examination.
“I need to apologize; I was being an a– earlier. You love your dad,” Owens told Grasham. Minutes later, they were verbally sparring once again.
He asked about Grasham’s sister, Jenny, describing Sanderson as “anal-retentive,” to which Grasham said, “I’m thinking that word came up with my older sister because I don’t even know what anal-retentive means … if you’re talking type A? I would not call him anal-retentive, no.”
Owens attempted to clarify his words by saying, “It has nothing to do with our butts.” Grasham ended her testimony with, “Yeah, let’s move on.”
When asked if her father had any prior mental health issues, Grasham said, “I never knew my dad to have an anger-management problem.”
Grasham realized something was “terribly wrong” with her father more than one year after the collision in Park City, Utah.
“His processing speeds,” she said, were slower and “the effort that it took, definitely when we were in person … I felt like, wow.”
“I almost expected drool to be coming out of his mouth because he was not engaged with anyone and had taken himself to a remote corner,” Grasham added.
The jury heard from Sanderson’s friend, Craig Ramon, and his ex-girlfriend, Karlene Davidson. Ramon was skiing nearby and allegedly heard a scream just before the collision happened. Owens recalled “300 pages” of transcript and a statement from Ramon, but Ramon couldn’t remember if Paltrow was wearing a helmet, hat or goggles on the day of the collision and also taking a photo with ski patrol following the accident.
“She just had a blank look on her face,” he recalled of the Marvel Cinematic Universe star after the crash, which left Sanderson briefly unconscious and requiring medical attention on the slopes in addition to an emergency room visit the following day.
One of Paltrow’s ski instructors had reportedly asked Ramon if he knew “that your buddy just took out Gwyneth Paltrow.”
Davidson was dating Sanderson at the time of the collision and said their relationship fell apart shortly after the incident. She described Terry as “fun-loving, joyful and very ambitious” with “a lot of energy.” She said “he started pushing me away” after the accident.
“He had no joy left in his life,” she recalled. “Not knowing what he was dealing with, I thought it was relationship-status things, and so I blame a lot of it on that … and now looking back, I think there was a lot going on.”