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West Haven (AP) - The family of a basketball player from Connecticut who died after being punched in a Romanian bar has filed a $210 million wrongful death lawsuit naming several defendants, including the attacker and doctors who treated him.
Chauncey Hardy died on Oct. 9, 2011, after being punched in a bar in the southern Romanian city of Giurgiu, where he played for the CSS Giurgiu basketball team. The former player for Sacred Heart University in Fairfield and Xavier High School in Middletown was 23.
Romanian prosecutors said Hardy was celebrating a win with CSS Giurgiu when he playfully put his cap on a woman's head and her boyfriend punched him in the face. Hardy suffered severe head injuries when he fell to the ground and died after surgery at a hospital in Bucharest.
Hardy's mother, Olamae Hardy, of Middletown, was announcing the lawsuit on Monday, the day before the one-year anniversary of her son's death. The lawsuit was filed last week in U.S. District Court in New Haven, citing Connecticut's wrongful death law and various state and federal laws on contracts and torts.
The family is suing the attacker, Ionut Adrian Tanasoaia, who was sentenced to five years in prison for the assault.
They are also suing a Giurgiu hospital, Spitalul Judetean Giurgiu, where Hardy was first treated, and two unnamed doctors who worked there. Health authorities fined the hospital $11,200 and the doctors $960 apiece, saying Hardy should have been transferred to Bucharest immediately instead of 4½ hours after he arrived at the Giurgiu hospital in a coma.
CSS Giurgiu and the Romanian Basketball Federation are also being sued on allegations that they failed to keep Hardy safe and failed to warn him about the dangers of Romanian gangs and the "anti-American, anti-African American" sentiment held by some Romanians.
The defendants have yet to file court documents responding to the allegations.