Son sues after father dies in taco eating contest at minor league baseball game

FRESNO, Calif. — The son of a man who died after a taco eating contest at a minor league baseball game is suing the team’s owner for the man’s death.

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The Fresno Bee reported Marshall Hutchings, 18, filed the suit saying that his father Dana Hutchings, 41, was not told about the risks of taking part in the competition.

Dana Hutchings died after choking on tacos.

The younger man is suing the owner of the event, Fresno Sports and Events LLC, owners of the Fresno Grizzlies.

The competition, held on Aug. 13, 2019, involved amateurs eating as many tacos as they could during a timed competition at a Grizzlies game at Chukchansi Park.

Attorney Martin Taleisnik, who is representing Marshall Hutchings, said professionals train for eating competitions, The Associated Press reported.

Taleisnik said the company did not inform Dana Hutchings of the risks when he entered the competition.

“The lack of information outlining every risk to amateur eaters was omitted and Mr. Hutchings entered the competition with limited information on all the risks he was agreeing to,” Taleisnik said, according to the Bee. “His assumption of risk was distorted, and therefore, he was unable to assume the risks he was taking when he agreed to enter the competition.”

Dana Hutchings collapsed during the contest and had a mouth full of chewed and unchewed food blocking his airway, the lawsuit alleges. He was taken from the stage by stadium staff where cardiopulmonary resuscitation and an automated external defibrillator were used. When emergency crews arrived they found him unconscious. He was pronounced dead at an area hospital. The county coroner’s office said he had choked to death, the Bee reported.

The Grizzlies President told the AP in an email, “We won’t be making any public comments” when asked about the suit.