Nick Gordon, the boyfriend of Bobbi Kristina Brown, has been found "legally responsible" for the death of Whitney Houston and Bobby Brown's daughter after he failed to appear at a pair of wrongful death civil lawsuit hearings.
According to Atlanta's 11 Alive, after Gordon missed a Friday hearing relating to the August 2015 wrongful death lawsuit filed against him, Fulton County Superior Court Judge T. Jackson Bedford ruled that anything the plaintiff – in this case, Brown's estate – alleges against Gordon is "admitted through omission."
The wrongful death civil suit, which accused Gordon of assault, battery, intentional infliction of emotional distress and transferring money from Brown’s account into his own without authorization, sought $50 million. The judge added that a jury trial will be set to determine how much Gordon will be required to pay in damages, The Associated Press reports.
"In court today, we finally finished a long journey for justice for Bobbi Kristina Brown," the Brown estate lawyer R. David Ware said outside of court Friday. "The court agrees with us, by striking Mr. Gordon's answer that he is legally responsible for her death. The only thing left to prove is the value of her life. We intend to do that."
Despite being found "legally responsible" for Brown's death, Gordon has not yet faced any criminal charges related to her July 2015 death, which came after she spent six months in a medically induced coma. Police found Brown face down and unresponsive in a filled bathtub in her home near Atlanta. In the lawsuit, which arrived a month after Brown's death, her estate accused Gordon of giving Brown a "toxic cocktail" prior to the January 2015 incident.
Ware continued, "It's not a criminal case but it doesn’t have to be. We want to legally establish he was responsible for her injuries the proceeded her death and we’ve done that today."
Although Gordon refused to discuss the details surrounding Brown's death with the court, he did speak at length about the incident during an April 2016 episode of Dr. Phil. This too angered the judge overseeing the case, as he said during Friday's hearing, "I do not like people thumbing their nose at the court."