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Trials Digest

Trials Digest Chart


Pregnancy Discrimination

Verdict: $185,872,720

Plaintiff alleged discrimination and harassment based on her pregnancy and gender, as well as retaliation, wrongful termination, and failure to prevent discrimination and harassment; a jury found for the plaintiff on all claims and awarded her $393,760 in back pay, $228,960 in front pay, $250,000 for pain and suffering and $185,000,000 in punitive damages (Juarez v. AutoZone Stores Inc., Southern District Federal Court, plaintiff attorneys:  Lawrance A. Bohm/Charles E. Moore).

L1 Burst Fracture

Verdict: $15,313,703

Passenger suffered an L1 fracture when defendant's bus sped over a speed bump; jury agreed with argument that to the extent plaintiff's pain and problems subjectively were greater than those experienced by most, they were nevertheless real to plaintiff (Francisco v. Alameda-Contra Costa Transit District, Alameda County Superior Court, plaintiff attorney:  Brian J. Panish).

Childbirth Injury

Settlement: $5,000,000

An infant reportedly suffered severe brain damage from hypoxia at birth, which manifested as profound cognitive deficits, significant intellectual deficits, developmental delays and severe language delays, requiring special education, behavioral therapy and speech therapy and resulting a permanent disability during her C-section birth performed at defendant hospital (H.F. v. Community Memorial Health System, Ventura County Superior Court, plaintiff attorney:  Eduardo J. Ascencio).

Pothole Accident

Settlement: $3,250,000

A bicyclist claimed that a street was covered in potholes, which caused her to fall off of her bike and sustain injuries to her face, head, jaw and teeth (Bower v. City of Oakland, Alameda County Superior Court, plaintiff attorney:  Carter M. Zinn).

Motorcyclist Fatality

Settlement: $1,000,000

A 2003 Jaguar S-type driven by a 98-year-old defendant allegedly made a left turn suddenly and without warning in front of decedent motercyclist who was proceeding straight through the intersection on a green traffic signal (Alaniz v. Braathen, Los Angeles County Superior Court, plaintiff attorney:  Michael A. Penn).

Age Discrimination

Verdict: $323,600

The plaintiff, who formerly worked for the defendants as a convenience store manager for 19 years, claimed when a new district manager was hired, he asserted false allegations against her as a pretext for terminating her employment due to her age (Turina v. Pacific Convenience & Fuels, Contra Costa County Superior Court, plaintiff attorney:  M. Greg Mullanax).

Femur Fracture

Settlement: $300,000

Plaintiff suffered a femur fracture requiring open reduction internal fixation surgery plus second surgery to remove hardware (Doyle v. Unknown, Los Angeles County Superior Court, plaintiff attorney:  Abram Charles Zukor).


Settlement: $271,000

Tenants claim landlord's failure to properly fix leak caused mold issues causing one plaintiff to be highly sensitized to mold and ultimately forcing the family to abandon their affordable home and relocate (Hayes v. Pham, San Francisco County Superior Court, plaintiff attorney:  Eric L. Lifschitz).

Wage/Break Violations

Settlement: $250,000

Plaintiffs, waitresses, filed a claim for unpaid minimum wages, overtime wages, unprovided meal and rest breaks and inaccurate wage statements against defendants (Jin v. Gaju Tofu & BBQ Inc., Los Angeles County Superior Court, plaintiff attorney:  Mark Fang).

Brain Damage

Settlement: $4,500,000

An adult male computer systems administrator reportedly suffered a skull fracture causing trauma and hemorrhaging in his brain, fractured vertebra in his neck, a fracture to his facial orbital bone and violations of his civil rights as a result of being struck by a bean bag shot from a high-powered rifle by a police officer employed by defendant (Olsen v. City of Oakland, Northern District Federal Court, plaintiff attorney: Mark W. Martel).


20-Foot Fall

Verdict: $62,060,086

A construction worker suffered significant personal injuries including traumatic brain injury when he fell 20 feet from the roof of building; plaintiff claimed defendant owner and defendant general contractor failed to provide him with proper protective equipment (Lin v. Hutch Realty Partners, LLC and Gamut Consulting, Inc., New York – Queens County Supreme Court, plaintiff attorney:  Benedict P. Morelli).


Verdict: $124,260,000

While wrapping Christmas presents, decedent was bludgeoned to death with a metal exercise bar  by her estranged husband, a University of Pennsylvania economics instructor, who wanted to protect his substantial assets and did not want decedent to leave him (Estate of Robb v. Robb, Pennsylvania – Montgomery County Court of Pleas, plaintiff attorney:  Robert J. Mongeluzzi).

Editors Note: California Bar Journal publishes this abbreviated summary of important trials provided by Trials Digest. To report your case results, go to or call 415-344-3952.