Judge Narrows Lawsuit Against Vikings By Stringer's Widow

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - A district judge Wednesday narrowed the negligence lawsuit brought against the Minnesota Vikings by the family of Korey Stringer, who collapsed in the heat at a training camp practice last August and later died.

The Vikings in February asked Hennepin County District Judge Gary Larson to dismiss the 10-count lawsuit, which accuses team officials and doctors of negligence, malpractice, intentional injury and infliction of emotional distress.

Larson narrowed the number of plaintiffs in the lawsuit to Stringer's widow, Kelci, saying state law only permits wrongful death claims to be made by the trustee of the estate of the person who died.

The judge also dismissed three of the 10 counts, including the accusation that the Vikings intended to cause Stringer's injury.

Stringer, 27, died of heatstroke last Aug. 1 after collapsing during practice the previous day. The offensive lineman, who was a native of Warren, Ohio, and a star at Warren G. Harding High School and Ohio State, was entering his seventh season with the Vikings and played in the 2001 Pro Bowl.

Kelci Stringer filed the lawsuit against the team in January, asking for $100 million. In March, Larson denied a motion by the Vikings to move the lawsuit to Mankato, where the team held the training camp and where Stringer died.

(Copyright 2002 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)