May 1, 2015 — A wrongful death lawsuit against Monster Energy Corp. is underway, with a jury in California set to decide whether the popular energy drink-maker is responsible for the death of 19 year-old Alex Morris.
Morris allegedly drank at least two 16-oz cans of Monster Energy every day for three years before his death.
According to the complaint:
“Despite the well-known health risks associated with excessive caffeine consumption, Monster Energy is heavily marketed towards teenagers and young adults, the individuals most susceptible to caffeine-related injury.”
Morris died in the early morning hours of July 1, 2012, and was taken to the hospital where he was pronounced dead at a hospital in Oakland. In the 24 hours before his death, he drank at least two 16-oz cans of Monster Energy.
The Alameda County coroner ruled his cause of death as “cardiac arrhythmia and cardiomyopathy,” with the toxicology report confirming no illegal drugs or alcohol involved.
Cardiomyopathy involves deterioration of the heart muscles. An arrhythmia is an electrical problem that causes the heart to beat too slow, too fast, or “flutter” ineffectively. These conditions can cause loss of consciousness or death.
The lawsuit accuses Monster of failing to warn about possible health risks, while marketing super-caffeinated beverages to demographics that have a higher risk of health problems from excessive caffeine consumption.
An investigation by Consumer Reports in 2012 found 92-mg of caffeine in 8-oz of Monster Energy, which suggests Morris could have been consuming nearly 400-mg of caffeine per day in the drinks — equivalent to about four cups of coffee.
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