Who hit whom in the back? Plaintiff in ski crash insists in court Gwyneth Paltrow did
LOS ANGELES, United States—The man suing Gwyneth Paltrow over what he claims was a hit-and-run ski accident on a posh US slope took the stand on Monday, March 27, to insist that it was he who was the victim, despite the actress’ claim before the court last week that the man, Terry Sanderson, plowed into her back.
“I got hit in my back so hard and it was right at my shoulder blades, a serious, serious smack. I’ve never been hit that hard, and I’m flying,” he told a court in Park City.
“Last thing I remember, everything was black.”
Sanderson, who before the incident had suffered vision problems and a heart attack, said the collision knocked him out.
The 76-year-old retired optometrist said the 2016 collision in Utah had left him with four broken ribs and lasting psychological damage.
“I’m like living another life now,” he told the jury.
“My interaction with my family has been more difficult and I think…. I of course… I’m desperate to be close to my family and my girls.
“But something’s wrong with my essence and what I bring to the table with them. Communication is not as smooth and it’s been more difficult.”
Sanderson’s lawyers say the collision caused him damage to the tune of $3.3 million. He filed the suit in 2019 and the case has taken this long to reach court.
The “Shakespeare in Love” actress has in turn countersued for a symbolic $1, plus legal expenses.
Asked about an email he sent to his daughters about the crash with a Hollywood celebrity with the subject line “I’m famous,” Sanderson said: “My head was scrambled.”
“I didn’t pick my words well. I was trying to add a little levity to a serious situation and it backfired.”
He did not deny sending the email, but insisted: “It’s the other personality that’s inhabiting my body right now.”
Stephen Owens, representing Paltrow, argued that any changes in Sanderson’s personality were more to do with the natural ageing process.
Last week Paltrow told the court, “Mr. Sanderson categorically hit me on that ski slope, and that is the truth.” She was skiing with her children and her partner, Brad Falchuk.
“I was skiing, and two skis came between my skis, forcing my legs apart, and then there was a body pressing against me, and there was a very strange grunting noise” she said.
In his opening statement last week, Paltrow’s lawyer said Sanderson is “obsessed” with the lawsuit, and that the case was a “meritless claim of false allegation.”
In addition to her Oscar-winning acting career, Paltrow has forged a second career marketing wellness products on her Goop website. /ra
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