Jury deliberations were nearly derailed Wednesday in the trial involving disgruntled Super Bowl XLV ticket holders when a witness appeared to have perjured himself during testimony.
ESPN published an interviewed on Wednesday with Scott Suprina, the president of Seating Solutions, who was hired to install the temporary seats for Super Bowl XLV.
Suprina said in the article he deflected blame from the NFL because league officials said it was in his best interest. He told the reporter "They encouraged me not to tell the whole story. They reinforced what my position would be before the deposition."
The case, being heard in a Dallas federal court, centers on the 1,200 temporary seats that were declared unsafe only hours before the big game in Arlington in 2011.
The plaintiff's attorney told the judge he was concerned Suprina may have perjured himself during a taped deposition played last week in court with testimony that may have favored the NFL.
The story hit ESPN's website while attorneys were in the middle of closing arguments on Wednesday morning and came to the attention of the plaintiffs over lunch. That set off a heated back & forth between the parties in court during the afternoon.
The plaintiff's attorney requested that the judge let the jury go for the day while they investigated the new information.
The judge opted to allow deliberations continue in an effort not to derail the entire case. But the plaintiffs filed an emergency motion to subpoena Suprina back to court and compel him to respond to his statements in the article.
The jury was unaware of Wednesday's revelations since they were in deliberations. There was no decision reached on Wednesday, with discussion set to resume on Thursday morning.
Jurors will deliver their verdict in court, but the judge said she will not issue her final judgment until the potential perjury issue gets resolved.
The judge could modify the jury's decision if she finds that Suprina perjured himself. The alternative is potentially a mistrial.