Martin County Jury Awards GCF Client $2.92 Million in Medical Negligence Case
In July of 2006, Pamela Moore was admitted to Martin Memorial Medical Center for what should have been a simple laparoscopic hysterectomy. After the surgery, however, Mrs. Moore began experiencing abnormal signs and symptoms including low blood pressure, high heart rate, nausea and severe abdominal pain. Those findings notwithstanding, Mrs. Moore was discharged three days after surgery. Over the next 24 hours, her symptoms got even worse, and her husband called 911. She was transported to another facility where a surgeon found that her sigmoid colon had been perforated. By that time, she was near death from septic shock and had a massive infection in her abdominal wall. Although she survived, she has required numerous additional surgeries and continues to suffer from recurrent MRSA infections.
Instead of accepting responsibility for the harm caused, Martin Memorial Medical Center and the gynecologist, Dr. Mcnaney-Flint denied liability and maintained that Mrs. Moore’s perforation did not occur until after she was discharged from the hospital.
After a three week trial which concluded on March 18, a Martin County jury rejected the Defendants’ position finding the hospital 70% responsible for Mrs. Moore’s damages and the physician 30% responsible. The award included just over $600,000 for past medical expenses, $370,000 in future medical care, and non-economic damages of almost $2 million.
Labor & Employment Decision
GCF’s Labor & Employment law team successfully represented the Indian River County School District in a teacher discipline case before the local school board. The favorable result was appealed to the Fourth District Court of Appeals, which affirmed and upheld the school board’s decision.
Indian River County Jury Awards $9.3 Million in Auto Case
On May 18, 2012 David Carter, Brian Connelly and Jason Odom of GCF’s Personal Injury Group completed a two week trial, resulting in a $9.3 million verdict for client, Leslie Opper.
At the time of the accident in 2009 Mr. Opper was a 41 year old roofer who was a passionate spear fisherman in his off time.
On April 11, 2009 the Plaintiff was operating a small motorcycle/scooter when a 91 year old man turned left in front of him hitting him essentially head on. As a result of the collision Mr. Opper sustained catastrophic injuries to his lower body, including snapped femurs and fractures to the spine and pelvis. The trauma doctors at Holmes Regional Medical Center testified in the case that he was one of the most seriously injured patients they have ever treated and that he had less than 16% chance of living. As a result, he has undergone over a dozen surgeries and will require ongoing future care. Currently, Mr. Opper can ambulate a short distance with the aid of Canadian crutches, but has to rely on a wheelchair for longer distances. He has fought to recover at every turn, and has, with the assistance of his friends and motorized scooter, gotten back in the water once.
Two days prior to the start of trial, the Defendant admitted liability, so the two week trial was a contest as to the amount of damages. On May 18, 2012 the Indian River County jury returned an award totaling $9.381 million.
Broken Needle Left inside Patient Results in $915,000 Verdict in Summary Jury Trial Proceeding
When GCF’s client was discharged from a local hospital after a routine surgical procedure, she expected to make a speedy recovery. Instead she spent months battling unexplained pelvic pain. She returned to the doctor who performed the surgery and to the hospital where the surgery was performed on numerous occasions, each time without an answer as to what was causing her symptoms. Eventually, her family doctor became concerned about the unexplained pain and ordered a CT Scan, which revealed a 1.5 centimeter broken suture needle approximately two millimeters from her bladder. The patient required an open abdominal procedure to remove the needle and obtained an infection as a result. A review of the patient’s records not only revealed that the needle had been left behind during the initial surgery, but that both the doctor and hospital administrators knew it was inside her body when she left the hospital.
A Summary Jury Trial (SJT) was ordered by the Court to issue an advisory ruling on the case being prosecuted by GCF’s Trial Team, led by David Carter and Jason Odom. On Nov. 10th the jury selected jointly by the parties returned a verdict against both the doctor and the hospital and awarded GCF’s client $915,000. The SJT process is utilized by the Court as a method to facilitate settlement without the cost of a complete trial. However, the result is not binding, and if no resolution is reached between the parties, GCF attorneys will present this case to a jury in a full trial early next year.
Wrongful Death Settlement
Gould Cooksey Fennell represented the family of an 83 year old woman that was killed when her car was struck by a 18-wheeler on SR 60 in Vero Beach, FL. The decendent’s adult children agreed to proceed as her statutory survivors and obtained a wrongful death settlement of $400,000.
$1.64 Million Dollars Awarded by Jury to 86 Year Old Couple
Obtained a Trial Verdict of $1.64 million dollars for injuries sustained by an 86 year old woman in a rollover auto accident on SR 60 in Vero Beach, Florida. After prolonged hospitalization, Mrs. Koebele never fully recovered and an Indian River County Jury awarded $1,170,130 for her injuries and $475,000 for her husband’s consortium claim.
Laporte v. State of Florida
Laura Laporte sustained numerous orthopedic injuries as a result of the negligence of a driver working for the State of Florida Department of Agriculture. At trial, the case resulted in a verdict of $5,582,776.82. Because the government’s damages are statutorily limited to $100,000 under Sovereign Immunity laws, Gould Cooksey Fennell’s Personal Injury Group was forced to fight in the Legislature for several years to pursue the passage of a Claims Bill. Ultimately a Bill was passed for 40 times the statutory limitations.
$750,000 Summary Jury Verdict against Assisted Living Facility
The Personal Injury Group obtained a $750,000 summary jury verdict, plus entitlement to punitive damages, against an assisted living facility who was found to have engaged in gross negligence. Albert Williams, a resident at the facility, was allowed by the facility’s staff to wander off premises by himself and on foot, even though the facility knew and believed that it was unsafe for him to do so. To make matters worse, Mr. Williams’ family was not timely notified of the situation, which prevented the family from taking action to protect him. Unfortunately, Mr. Williams was allowed to wander off premises for a third and final time, and the facility failed to recognize that he was missing until he had been gone for 24 hours. Mr. Williams was later found by law enforcement, deceased, six days later. Following the verdict rendered by the summary jury panel, the case settled for a confidential amount.
Confidential Settlement in Wrongful Death of Mother
Gould Cooksey Fennell served as Co-Counsel in a Georgia case involving alleged misdiagnosis/mistreatment of preeclampsia resulting in the death of a 39 year old mother.