By COREY WILLIAMS and LARRY LAGE, AP NEWS

 

Dozens of Black former University of Michigan student-athletes who claim they were abused by a sports doctor at the school asked Wednesday to be treated fairly as the university settles hundreds of lawsuits expected to cost the institution millions of dollars.

They’re demanding that victims of Dr. Robert Anderson receive fair compensation “based on their trauma rather than based on their color.”

Most personal injury cases are settled out of court with the amounts often based on data that projects lower lifetime earnings for Blacks, Latinos and women than white men, said Parker Stinar, an attorney with Denver-based Wahlberg, Woodruff, Nimmo & Sloane law firm.

A former Michigan football player and wrestler discussed their experiences during a news conference at a hotel in the Detroit suburb of Novi.

“I still love the University of Michigan,” said Dwight Hicks, who captained the Wolverines football team in 1977 before going on to win two Super Bowls as a four-time Pro Bowl defensive back for the San Francisco 49ers. “I hope the University of Michigan understands and acknowledges what happened to so many of us. And I would hope that they would recognize the trauma that was bestowed on us.”

Stinar said nearly half of the 750 men who say they were sexually abused by Anderson are Black.

“As plaintiff trial lawyers, we are familiar with the prejudices that jurors have against plaintiffs, especially plaintiffs that are minority men,” said Stinar, whose firm represents more than 100 clients with claims against Anderson. “Historically, Black men receive the lowest verdict or settlement awards, especially compared to white men and women.”

Anderson worked at the university from the mid-1960s through 2003. He died in 2008

(read more at apnews.com)