INGLEWOOD, Calif. - A San Francisco 49ers fan assaulted in a SoFi Stadium parking lot during the 2022 NFC championship game, leaving the victim in a medically induced coma, had tried entering the game without a ticket, attorneys for Los Angeles County state in new court papers.
The Los Angeles Rams and plaintiff Daniel Luna's alleged assailant, Bryan Alexis Cifuentes, were among the original defendants named when the case was brought in September 2022. Luna's wife, Irene Sulencka, alleges loss of consortium.
Cifuentes has maintained that he acted in self-defense in the confrontation with Luna.
Luna and Sulencka filed a first amended complaint in May adding the city of Inglewood and Los Angeles County as defendants. However, the city was dropped as a defendant in August. The plaintiffs filed a second revised complaint on Oct. 2.
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In court papers filed Monday with Inglewood Superior Court Judge Ronald F. Frank, the county lawyers say surveillance footage shows that after Luna was denied entrance for not having a ticket, he was escorted away by sheriff's deputies who had no further contact with the plaintiff.
"Mr. Luna admits that afterward he joined a tailgate, consumed alcohol to the point of intoxication and initiated contact with Mr. Cifuentes prior to the altercation," the county attorneys state in their court papers.
The appellate courts have "repeatedly and consistently held that public entities and law enforcement do not owe any duty to intoxicated persons such Mr. Luna," the county attorneys argue in their court papers arguing in favor of dismissing the county as a defendant during a hearing set for Jan. 5.
The county did not owe a duty to Luna and Sulencka and cannot be held liable to either, the county lawyers further state in their court papers.
Luna's attorneys maintain the deputies should have put the plaintiff in a "sobering cell or a similar room or an automobile" given his intoxication and that failing to do so put the plaintiff in danger of physical harm. The deputies instead put Luna "near groups of competing fans who were consuming large amounts of alcohol during a rivalry game," the suit states.
Also in August, Luna dropped Apex Security Group Inc. as a defendant.
Prosecutors said Luna approached a group of people outside the stadium and an altercation ensued, during which Cifuentes allegedly slugged Luna, who fell to the ground.
Luna, who was wearing a 49ers jersey, was found by a security guard in the parking lot and taken to Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, where he was placed in a medically induced coma with injuries to his face and upper body.
Inglewood Mayor James Butts said days later that surveillance video of the altercation showed a group of fans tailgating in Parking Lot L, and Luna appeared to shove Cifuentes from behind.
"The suspect then retaliated by pushing Mr. Luna from behind, and then struck (him) once in the mouth area," Butts said. "Luna then fell to the ground, where he was later found by security personnel who summoned paramedics."
Cifuentes was eventually found due to the surveillance video, which captured a vehicle license plate image. After Cifuentes' arrest, his acquaintances told reporters that Luna was the aggressor and appeared to be intoxicated.
Friends of Luna said he flew to Los Angeles and attended the game alone after other fans who planned to go canceled those plans. Luna owns the Oakland Peruvian fusion restaurant Mistura.