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February 25, 1986

Georgia Attorney General Michael Bowers has asked a federal judge for a new trial in the case of Jan Kemp's lawsuit against two University of Georgia officials, charging that the $2.57-million damage award was "shockingly excessive."

In a motion for a new trial, Bowers said that the jury in the case was swayed by weeks of evidence on the preferential treatment given to student-athletes at Georgia and that testimony blurred the main issue in the case--whether Mrs. Kemp was fired in violation of her First Amendment rights.

The jury's award to Mrs. Kemp included punitive damages of $1.5 million against Ms. Trotter and $800,000 punitive damages against Ervin. The motion for a new trial called these punitive damages "so excessive as to shock the conscience of the court."

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