LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (May 23)—Cooper Tire & Rubber Co. should have known that documents destroyed by Cooper employees could be requested as evidence in litigation, a federal judge in Little Rock has ruled. Judge George Howard Jr. said he would allow plaintiffs' attorneys in Hervey vs. Cooper to introduce evidence about the destruction of the documents, and also ordered Cooper to pay the court costs of brothers Demario and Rashad Hervey. However, he rejected plaintiffs' attorneys' motion to preclude the testimony of Cooper's expert witness regarding possible causes of failure in the Cooper tires mentioned in the case. "We will be able to present our case to the jury and will explain that any documents that were discarded under our document retention policy had nothing to do with this unfortunate and tragic accident," Cooper CEO Thomas Dattilo said in a press release.