Sponsored By:


Polo Tycoon John Goodman in $46 Million Settlement for DUI Death

PHOTO: John Goodman sits in the courtroom during his DUI manslaughter trial, March, 22, 2012, in West Palm Beach, Fla.

Convicted polo tycoon John Goodman agreed to a $46 million settlement to the parents of 23-year-old Scott Wilson who died in a drunken driving accident perpetrated by Goodman, according to court documents.

Lili and William Wilson, Scott Wilson’s parents, will each receive $23 million in the settlement, the same age their son was when he was killed.

All parties involved had previously been tight-lipped about the settlement amount in the civil suit over the crash after Goodman adopted his 42-year-old girlfriend to help protect his estate n the civil suit.

The amount was disclosed in a motion for bond filed Wednesday.

The attorneys filed the motion in hopes of being able to get Goodman out of prison pending his appeal and the outcome of his motion for a new trial. Earlier this week, Goodman’s attorneys filed a motion for a new trial based on alleged juror misconduct.

A Florida jury found Goodman guilty of DUI manslaughter and vehicular homicide in March. He could face up to 30 years in prison when sentenced April 30.

Goodman’s Bentley slammed into Scott Wilson’s Hyundai and sent it into a nearby canal in Wellington, Fla., in February 2010. Wilson, a 23-year-old engineering graduate, was strapped into the driver’s seat and drowned.

PHOTO: John Goodman sits in the courtroom during his DUI manslaughter trial, March, 22, 2012, in West Palm Beach, Fla.

PHOTO: John Goodman sits in the courtroom during his DUI manslaughter trial, March, 22, 2012, in West Palm Beach, Fla.

The multi-millionaire founder of the International Polo Club Palm Beach claimed his $200,000 car malfunctioned and lurched forward. He has also denied being drunk at the time of the crash that killed Wilson, although other testimony has contradicted him and his blood alcohol level was more than twice the legal limit three hours after the crash.

Goodman’s attorneys provided a list of reasons why he should be eligible for release. Among the reasons, they point out that during the more than two years Goodman was on pretrial release, “he complied with every condition,” the motion said.

Attorneys also said in the document that Goodman does not pose a risk of flight, writing, “He never once even thought about fleeing.”

The concise 10th item on the list reveals the settlement amount: “Mr. Goodman has also settled the civil lawsuit brought against him by the Wilson family. The Wilsons will receive a total of $46 million.”

Attorneys for both Lili and William Wilson did not respond to ABCNews.com’s requests for comment today.

But Christian Searcy, Lili Wilson’s attorney, told the Palm Beach Post that the money did not come from Goodman’s fortune, but, rather, from insurance companies.

“I think [the money] might have more sway if it came from Mr. Goodman,” Searcy told the paper.

He also noted that $6 million of the settlement came from The Player’s Club, the restaurant where Goodman had been drinking before the crash.

The motion filed Monday in a Palm Beach County court, asked for a new trial or for Goodman’s convictions to be overturned.

In the motion, an alternate juror reported the alleged instances of misconduct to Goodman’s lawyers, saying “it was clear” to her the jurors had made up their minds before the end of the trial.

The defense claims that jurors “repeatedly disobeyed their oaths and instructions from the court” in several ways, including by discussing evidence before the end of the case, by making derogatory comments about Goodman’s wealth throughout the trial, and by ignoring instructions about not reading media coverage of the case.

The defense also alleges that two jurors made false statements in order to cover up a juror’s “prejudicial gesture” and that the same juror improperly began writing a book about the case during the trial.

Leave a Reply




You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>