Category: Torts

Women Go To Barber For Cosmetic Surgery . . . Well You Know The Rest

Barbershop owner Young Hwan Choi, 72, allegedly had a side business of doing cosmetic surgery and the results were as predictable as their were criminal. Various women suffered facial scars from the laser surgery. What is striking is that the police released images of his barbershop, suggesting that the women may have actually gone to the barbershop for the surgery as opposed to some fraudulent surgery center. If true, the bizarre decision of these victims could factor into any tort damages as plaintiff’s conduct questions.

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New York Woman Sues Hospital After Terminating Life Support on A Stranger

There is a bizarre torts case in New York city where Shirell Powell is suing St. Barnabas Hospital in the Bronx after he mistakingly authorized the termination of life support for a stranger. She had been told that the man was her brother, Frederick Williams. The family later found out that it was a Freddy Clarence Williams, who was no relation.

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Police Search For Rapist After Woman in Vegetative State For Ten Years Gives Birth In Arizona Facility

Regulars on this blog are familiar with the doctrine of res ipsa loquitur (or “the thing speaks for itself”). One twisted case near Phoenix, Arizona would certainly seem to fit that definition after a patient in a vegetative state gave birth. AZ Family reported that he victim is a member of the San Carlos Apache Tribe who nearly drowned 10 years ago. Police or the company may seek DNA samples from all male employees at Hacienda HealthCare. In this case, a positive match would by definition confirm rape given the non-consensual context.

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One Free Bite? Jogger Fights Off Dog With Pepper Spray . . . Dog Owner Bites Jogger

In torts, we learn about animal liability rules governing dogs. While domesticated animals are generally not subject to strict liability, a dog with a vicious character (or one that has previously attacked) does fall under the strict liability standard. However, what about a vicious owner. Police are looking for a woman who attacked a jogger who used pepper spray to fight off her dog. The woman, not the dog, bit the jogger.

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It’s A Wonderful Libel? Trump Suggests Legal Action Against SNL For Latest Skit

I have previously criticized President Donald Trump for his calls for greater liability of the media for its coverage of the controversies surrounding his Administration.   This weekend, Trump was again suggesting the need for legal review as he was excoriated by Saturday Night Live in a skit based on the classic Christmas movie “It’s a Wonderful Life.”  Fortunately, the courts have maintained core free speech and free press protections from such assaults, particularly in the realm of comedy and parody.  

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Vermont Man Causes Controversy Over One-Finger Salute To City Officials

Facebook: Ted Pelkey

We previously discussed the sometimes thin line between free speech and a nuisance.  The latest such controversy has arisen in Westford, Vermont where Ted Pelkey decided to make a statement after city officials refused his permit to build an 8,000 square foot garage on his property. His response was a single finger salute to  the Westford Selectboard and Development Review Board.  This is not the first such salute piece to prompt legal questions over its display.  Notably, the Vermont Supreme Court recently ruled that ugly is not a nuisance.

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Will Manafort Sue The Guardian? Former Trump Campaign Chair Declares Assange Story “Totally False and Deliberately Libelous”

UnknownIn my column yesterday, I discussed the major news story out of the Guardian that former Trump Campaign Chair Paul Manafort repeatedly met with WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. The Guardian reported that  Manafort visited Assange in Ecuador’s London embassy in 2013, 2015 and in spring 2016. That last visit allegedly occurred around the same time as Manafort’s selection as Trump campaign chair. Ecuador’s Senain intelligence agency reportedly said that the logs include “Paul Manaford [sic]” and mentioned “Russians.”  Now however Manafort and Wikileaks have completely denied the story and Manafort charged that the story is “totally false and deliberately libelous.”  If so, that could lead to an interesting defamation lawsuit that should be relatively easy to prove either way. Continue reading “Will Manafort Sue The Guardian? Former Trump Campaign Chair Declares Assange Story “Totally False and Deliberately Libelous””

Bad Bet: Plaintiff Turns Down $2.5 Million Offer From Mandalay Bay . . . Jury Then Awards Just $500,000

Gambling in Vegas is always precarious when playing against the house. It appears the same is true in both the courts and the casinos.   Glenn Richardson sued Mandalay Bay resort for personal injuries sustained near the hotel pool.  The hotel offered a $2.5 million offer and Richardson surprisingly turned it down and instead opted to go to a verdict.  He received just $524,000 from the jury — a $2 million loss. Continue reading “Bad Bet: Plaintiff Turns Down $2.5 Million Offer From Mandalay Bay . . . Jury Then Awards Just $500,000”

TURKEY TORTS (2018)

stock-graphics-vintage-thanksgiving-postcard-00305-1In celebration of Thanksgiving, I give you our annual Turkey Torts of civil and criminal cases that add liability to libations on this special day (with past cases at the bottom). Many criminal defense attorneys and torts attorneys give special thanks for a holiday that can involve copious amounts of alcohol, strained family relations, over-the-hill amateur football players, “Black Friday” sale stampedes, and novice cooks.  These cases are why Johnny Carson said Thanksgiving is an emotional holiday. People travel thousands of miles to be with people they only see once a year. And then discover once a year is way too often.

Have a happy and safe Thanksgiving!

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Mueller Accuser Is A No Show As Criminal and Civil Liability Loom Over The Allegations of Sexual Assault

Conspiracy theorists Jacob Wohl and Jack Burkman, a conservative lobbyist and radio host, are outspoken supporters of President Donald Trump and called reporters to come to a Holiday Inn in Washington to hear from a woman who would allegedly accuse Special Counsel Robert Mueller of sexual misconduct.  Previously, Mueller referred an allegation to the FBI that women were promised money to accuse him of wrongdoing.  With the no show of their accuser, Wohl and Burkman could well be looking at both criminal and civil liability.

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Spooky Torts: The 2018 List Of Halloween Litigation Horrors

200px-Pumpkins2009Here is our annual list of Halloween torts and crimes. Halloween of course remains a holiday seemingly designed for personal injury lawyers around the world and this year’s additions show why. Halloween has everything for a torts-filled holiday: battery, trespass, defamation, nuisance, product liability and more.  This year’s addition is a real dozzy.

So, with no further ado, here is this year’s updated list of actual cases related to Halloween. Continue reading “Spooky Torts: The 2018 List Of Halloween Litigation Horrors”

Family Of Pennsylvania College Student Sues Sacred Heart University Over Death During Eating Contest

Drinking and eating contests were once the rage.  While most (though not all) of the drinking contests are gone, eating contests are still prevalent.  The risk of choking is obvious in such contests as is tragically evident in Connecticut in a new filing.  The family of Caitlin Nelson, 20, is suing Sacred Heart University for her death in a pancake-eating contest. The filing is based on “the preventable dangers associated with amateur eating competitions.”

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Res ipsa loquitur – The thing itself speaks