Texas jury rejects lawsuit against Osteen’s wife
HOUSTON – The wife of televangelist Joel Osteen thanked and praised God after a jury unanimously decided Thursday that she did not assault a flight attendant during an alleged tirade over a stain on her first-class seat.
Jurors rejected Continental Airlines flight attendant Sharon Brown’s claims that Victoria Osteen threw her against a bathroom door and elbowed her in the left breast while attempting to rush the cockpit because she was angry that a stain on her seat’s armrest was not quickly cleaned up.
Victoria Osteen began to cry after the jury’s verdict was read. She hugged her attorneys and several supporters in the courtroom as she said “thank you God” and “praise God.” The 12 jurors deliberated for about 2 1/2 hours.
“I’m glad it’s over,” Victoria Osteen said afterward. “I expected it because it’s the truth and I know the truth always stands firm.”
Joel Osteen said he and his family hold no ill will toward Brown.
“It’s a great vindication and shows us the faithfulness of God,” he said.
Brown was suing for at least $405,000 for physical and mental pain suffered as a result of the attack she alleged had occurred before takeoff aboard a December 2005 flight from Houston to Vail, Colo.
Victoria Osteen, the co-pastor of Houston’s popular Lakewood Church, testified that the alleged assault never happened, as did her husband and other first-class passengers. Victoria Osteen’s lawyer dismissed Brown’s lawsuit as a made-up story concocted to land a courtroom payday.
Another flight attendant, Maria Johnson, supported Brown’s claims. Both flight attendants testified they had to block the cockpit door to prevent Victoria Osteen from getting inside.
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