Verdicts & Settlements

At the Law Offices of Jeffrey R. Lamb, my trial practice is focused on catastrophic personal injury, wrongful death, products liability, professional liability and municipal liability. I have helped litigate or settle numerous high profile cases, including:

To learn more about the compensation I have obtained on behalf of injury victims in Los Angeles, Santa Monica and elsewhere in southern California, view the following verdict and settlement summaries:

12 Trials Digest 15th 22, 2011 WL 7473167 (Cal.Superior) (Verdict and Settlement Summary)

Copyright (c) 2012 Thomson Reuters/West

Superior Court, Los Angeles County, California.

Rolston vs. O'Connell

TOPIC:

Synopsis: Wrong-way PCH driver causes motorcyclist's accident

Case Type: Vehicle Negligence; Motor Vehicle v. Motor Vehicle; Vehicle Negligence; Motorcycle; Vehicle Negligence; Head-On; Vehicle Negligence; Non-Impact Accident

DOCKET NUMBER: SC103531

STATE: California

COUNTY: Los Angeles

Verdict/Judgment Date: October 27, 2011

JUDGE: Craig D. Karlan

ATTORNEYS:

Plaintiff: Jeffrey R. Lamb, Law Offices of Martin L. Stanley, Santa Monica; Martin L. Stanley, Law Offices of Martin L. Stanley, Santa Monica.

Defendant: Stephen C. Pasarow, Knapp, Petersen & Clarke, Glendale.

SUMMARY:

Verdict/Judgment: Plaintiff

Verdict/Judgment Amount: $190,000

Range: $100,000-199,999

$57,000 past lost earnings; $35,000 future medical expenses; $76,000 future lost earnings and earning capacity; $22,000 past non-economic loss. The court added $10,565 in costs to the award.

Trial Type: Jury

Deliberations: Not reported.

Jury Poll: Not reported.

EXPERTS:

Unspecified Side: Lawrence P. Harter, M.D., radiologist, Pueblo Radiology Medical Group Inc., Santa Barbara, (805) 682-7744.; Stephen P. Kay, M.D., orthopedic surgeon, Los Angeles, (310) 553-2882.; James G. Kent, Ph.D., biomechanist, Los Angeles, (310) 824-4643.; Jennifer L. Polhemus, economist, Precision Research, Santa Monica, (310) 399-1441.

TEXT:

CASE INFORMATION

FACTS/CONTENTIONS

According to court records: On September 15, 2008, at the intersection just north of Tuna Canyon Road and Pacific Coast Highway in Malibu, California, plaintiff Bruce Rolston and defendant Marc O'Connell were involved in a car versus motorcycle accident.

Defendant was traveling the wrong way on the one-way roadway when he met plaintiff in a curve. Plaintiff made a quick turn on his motorcycle to avoid defendant's vehicle, and the motorcycle slid out from under him.

Plaintiff was a plastic surgeon.

Defendant admitted liability but disputed the claim for lost earnings. Defendant also contended plaintiff was involved in a second motorcycle accident approximately six weeks after the first in which he fell 20 to 30 feet off a cliff and was found unconscious. Defendant claimed many of plaintiff's injuries could be attributed to that accident.

CLAIMED INJURIES

According to court records:

Clavicle fracture; fractured ribs; pain; sleep deprivation.

CLAIMED DAMAGES

According to court records:

$106,935 past medical; $200,000 loss of earnings.

SETTLEMENT DISCUSSIONS

According to court records:

Not reported.

COMMENTS

According to court records:

The complaint was filed on June 12, 2009.

Trials Digest, A Thomson Reuters/West business

Los Angeles County Superior Court/Santa Monica

50 Trials Digest 15th 4, 2012 WL 6708591 (C.D.Cal.) (Verdict and Settlement Summary)

Copyright (c) 2012 Thomson Reuters/West

United States District Court, C.D. California, Western Division.

Allen vs. City of Los Angeles

TOPIC:

Synopsis: $3.2M award follows police shooting, tasing

Case Type: Civil Rights & Constitutional Law; Excessive Force; Civil Rights & Constitutional Law; Section 1983; Negligence-Other; Vicarious Liability

DOCKET NUMBER: 10CV04695(CAS)

STATE: California

COUNTY: Not Applicable

Verdict/Judgment Date: November 19, 2012

JUDGE: Christina A. Snyder

ATTORNEYS:

Plaintiff: Gilbert Geilim, Law Offices of Gilbert Geilim, Van Nuys; Jeffrey Lamb, Law Offices of Martin Stanley, Santa Monica; Martin Stanley, Law Offices of Martin Stanley, Los Angeles.

Defendant: Richard Arias, Office of City Attorney, Los Angeles.

SUMMARY:

Verdict/Judgment: Plaintiff

Verdict/Judgment Amount: $3,218,500

Range: $2,000,000-4,999,999

The jury found defendants Houlihan and Bezak used excessive force and awarded plaintiff $200,000 economic damages and $3,000,000 general damages. The jury also awarded punitive damages in the amount of $17,500 against defendant Houlihan and $1,000 against defendant Bezak. Defendant Phan was not found liable on the excessive force claim. On the negligence claim, the jury found defendant Houlihan was negligent and 90 percent responsible for plaintiffs harm and plaintiff was negligent and 7 percent responsible for her harm. Defendant Phan was found 3 percent responsible for plaintiff's harm but was not found negligent. Because plaintiff prevailed on the excessive force claim, the verdict amount was not affected by the negligence apportionment. The court awarded plaintiff $522,121 attorney fees and $20,036 costs.

Trial Type: Jury

Deliberations: Not reported.

Jury Poll: Not reported.

EXPERTS:

Plaintiff: Not reported.

Defendant: Not reported.

TEXT:

CASE INFORMATION

FACTS/CONTENTIONS

According to Plaintiff: On Sept. 3, 2009, plaintiff Valerie Allen was walking near Franklin Avenue in Los Angeles, visibly disoriented and suffering from a manic episode due to her bipolar disorder. According to defendant city of Los Angeles and defendant Officers N. Phan, Brent Houlihan and J. Bezak, plaintiff was seen running nude in a residential area, and when defendants Houlihan and Phan first came across her in their patrol car, plaintiff pounded on the windows of the vehicle and then ran toward a jogger with clenched fists. As plaintiff ran away, a foot chase ensued, and plaintiff reportedly climbed a wrought iron fence and sprayed defendant Houlihan with a garden hose. When officers trapped plaintiff in the front yard of a residence on Franklin Avenue, plaintiff began walking quickly toward the officers to confront them, defendants said. Defendant Houlihan reportedly ordered defendant Phan to deploy his taser, but before defendant Phan did so, plaintiff struck him with a wooden stake with such force it knocked Phan to the ground. According to defendants, plaintiff approached Phan with the stake raised as if to strike him a second time, but before she could do so defendant Houlihan shot plaintiff three times at close range.

After hearing the "shots fired" radio call requesting backup, defendant officer Bezak arrived at the scene. According to defendants, despite being shot, plaintiff continued to resist their efforts to subdue and handcuff her and defendant Bezak tased plaintiff to immobilize her. Defendants said plaintiff continued to struggle and it took all three officers to handcuff her. According to plaintiff, defendants waited a minute and forty seconds between shooting her and calling for an ambulance without explanation. Plaintiff was thereafter taken into custody.

The parties disputed the amount of time that passed during the incident, including at what point the officers exited their vehicle and when shots were fired. Plaintiff alleged there were inconsistencies in defendants' testimonies regarding the length of the encounter as defendant Houlihan testified the whole encounter took 15 to 20 minutes whereas defendant Phan testified the encounter lasted five minutes. Further, defendants claimed they were only outside of their vehicle for twenty seconds. Plaintiff contended that based on the officers' inconsistencies and the independent witness's recollection of what she heard, the defendants' testimony was not credible.

Plaintiff disputed that she started walking quickly towards the officers and instead contended defendant Phan began to approach plaintiff because he thought he heard defendant Houlihan instructing him to "grab her". Plaintiff further disputed how hard she struck defendant Phan given the minimal evidence presented on any injury that resulted from plaintiff's assault. Plaintiff also contended that it was impossible for her to conceal any other sort of weapon at the time of the incident, therefore she disputed whether defendant Houlihan could have reasonably feared for the life of his partner. Plaintiff further disputed that she could have struggled in the way defendants suggested, given her gunshot wounds and therefore maintained that it was cruel and unnecessary for defendant Bezak to tase her. Plaintiff alleged there were other methods of non-lethal force available to the officers and contended the officers should have called a special mental health unit since they knew she was likely suffering from some sort of mental illness.

Plaintiff alleged violations of her civil rights and negligence against defendants city of Los Angeles, Los Angeles Police Department and officers Houlihan, Phan and Bezak.

Defendants denied liability and contended the officers acted reasonably at all times while attempting to detain, handcuff and arrest plaintiff.

CLAIMED INJURIES

According to Plaintiff: Three gunshot wounds resulting in nerve damage to left arm and scars.

CLAIMED DAMAGES

According to Plaintiff: Not reported.

SETTLEMENT DISCUSSIONS

According to Plaintiff: Not reported.

COMMENTS

According to Plaintiff: The complaint was filed June 24, 2010.

Trials Digest, A Thomson Reuters/West business

Central District Federal Court/Los Angeles

JVR No. 1405010039, 2013 WL 8476271 (C.D.Cal.) (Verdict and Settlement Summary)

Copyright (c) 2012 Thomson Reuters/West

United States District Court, C.D. California.

CORTEZ, ESTATE OF v. COUNTY OF LOS ANGELES; LOS ANGELES COUNTY SHERIFF'S DEPARTMENT

2:10CV00169

DATE OF INCIDENT: April 12, 2008

DATE OF FILING: January 11, 2010

DATE OF TRIAL/SETTLEMENT: July 08, 2013

General: Law Enforcement

Specific: Gunshot

SUMMARY

Outcome: Settlement

Total: $83,000

HIGH AMOUNT: $0

LOW AMOUNT: $0

Related Court Documents:

Plaintiffs' second amended complaint: 2011 WL 10618874

Defendants' trial brief: 2012 WL 7984271

EXPERT-WITNESSES:

ATTORNEY:

Plaintiff: Martin L. Stanley, Law Office of Martin L. Stanley, Santa Monica, CA

Plaintiff: Jeffrey Robbin Lamb, Law Office of Martin L. Stanley, Santa Monica, CA

Defendant: Dennis Michael Gonzales, Lawrence, Beach, Allen & Choi, Glendale, CA

Defendant: Nathan A. Oyster, Lawrence, Beach, Allen & Choi, Glendale, CA

Defendant: Raymond W. Sakai, Lawrence, Beach, Allen & Choi, Glendale, CA

Defendant: Roger H. Granbo, Office of Los Angeles County Counsel, Los Angeles, CA

JUDGE: Christine A. Snyder

RANGE AMOUNT: $50,000 - 99,999

STATE: California

COUNTY: Not Applicable

PRIMARY INJURY: Death

SUMMARY

PLAINTIFF:

Sex: M

Age: Adult, 21

DEFENDANT:

Sex: O

Organization Type: County of Los Angeles

Sex: O

Organization Type: Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department

DAMAGES:

Total Compensatory Award: $83,000

Punitive Damages: $0

Property Damages: $0

Interest: $0

Other Damages: $0

Loss of Services: $0

Comparative Negligence Percentage: 0

Number of Minor Children: 2

Number of Adult Children: 0

Decedent Salary: $0

FACTS:

This wrongful death action was brought after 21-year-old Fernando Cortez was killed in a police shooting when defendant Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department deputies entered the store where he was working and shot him in the back, resulting in his death. The parties agreed to a $83,000 settlement for the benefit of decedent's hiers. The decedent was survived by two minor children.

Jury Verdict Research

COURT: USDC