Former “Price” Model Awarded Additional Millions, Executive Producer Mike Richards Comments
Yesterday, we told you about the result of the Brandi Cochran (then known on-air as Brandi Sherwood) lawsuit brought forth in response to staff at The Price Is Right allegedly mistreating her at the workplace during her pregnancy and subsequently terminated her following the aftermath of the event. The jury in the case awarded Cochran, who was a model from 2002 to 2009, $775,000 in damages. However, they were not through. TMZ announced yesterday that the jury also awarded her an additional $7,763,440 in punitive damages, making the total damages awarded for Cochran over $8.5 million. Punitive damages are additional forms of compensation offered to dissuade similar wrongdoings from the defendant in the future, almost like “sending a message.” While this is the figure that is currently standing, it is possible that after additional appeals and further litigation in other venues that the sum could shrink. Still, no matter which way one looks at it, this is a major victory for Cochran.
Originally, the only statement made on the issue came from a representative for FremantleMedia, Price‘s production company. “We believe the verdict in this case was the result of a flawed process in which the court, among other things, refused to allow the jury to hear and consider that 40 percent of our models have been pregnant and other important evidence to our defense… We expect to be fully vindicated after the matter has been reviewed and stand behind executive producer Mike Richards and the staff of The Price is Right.” However, late Wednesday evening, a blog post quietly appeared on The Price Is Right‘s official website. Written by Richards himself, the post is titled, or at least begins with, “If we don’t like pregnant models, we sure have a funny way of showing it.”
Richards notes that yesterday was “a tough day for The Price Is Right and its staff,” and that while he cannot “comment on ongoing litigation,” he says that he can “comment on what I know is true. My job and the job of the rest of our team is to make this American institution as great as it can be every day.” After the opening paragraph, no more mention is made of the suit and Cochran is never mentioned by name. The rest of the post notes how the show has evolved since Drew Carey took over, and mostly consists of examples of how some of the current models have taken time off for pregnancies and how the show has celebrated them.
It’s likely that this will not be the last we hear of these legal issues between Price and Brandi Cochran, especially with over eight million dollars in legal awards resting on these decisions.
Source : TMZ