PORTLAND, Ore. >> An Oregon woman has filed a $9.2 million lawsuit against pop star Justin Bieber, alleging she suffered permanent hearing loss at his Portland concert two years ago.
Stacey Wilson Betts of Wilsonville filed the suit Wednesday in U.S. District Court. It states that the mother of five sustained the injury after Bieber climbed into a heart-shaped gondola and was pulled over the crowd.
The lawsuit alleges Bieber enticed the fans into a “frenzy of screams” by waving his arms, and the sound exceeded safe decibel levels.
The gondola “acted as a sound conductor, creating a sound blast that permanently damaged both my ears,” Betts wrote in the lawsuit.
Betts, who attended the concert with one of her daughters, is seeking money for medical expenses, pain and suffering and loss of quality of life. The lawsuit lists Bieber as a defendant, as well as Island Def Jam Records and Vulcan Sports and Entertainment, which owns the arena in which the July 2010 concert took place.
Betts and the record label did not immediately return phone calls seeking comment. No attorney is listed in the court documents.
The lawsuit says Betts has been seeing ear specialists because of hearing loss; severe tinnitus, or noise or ringing in the ears; and hyperacusis, a sensitivity to sound. Supporting court documents show Betts has not been employed since 2005 and has received disability or workers compensation payments for the past year. They also show she has a spouse or significant other who works at a high school.
“I had no reasonable way to anticipate the gondola could create a sound blast that would permanently damage my ears,” Betts said in the lawsuit. “Experienced promoters, sound engineers, managers and artists are responsible to maintain safe decibels at all times during their events.”