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Updated: 1 hour 49 min ago

NHL faces 2nd concussion lawsuit, which claims that Gordie Howe died in 2009

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 14:41

nhl-logoBy Greg Wyshynski

The NHL was hit with a second concussion suit on Thursday, a major class action lawsuit just filed in US District Court (Southern New York) involving nine former players: Dan LaCouture, Dan Keczmer, Jack Carlson, Richard Brennan, Brad Maxwell, Michael Peluso, Allan Rourke and Scott Bailey.

Yes, Jack Carlson, whose brothers Steve and Jeff were two of the Hanson Brothers in the hockey classic “Slap Shot.”

This is the second concussion lawsuit the NHL has faced; the first was filed last November.

From the complaint:

As opposed to other elite-level ice hockey organizations, like the European ice hockey leagues and the Olympics, the NHL fostered and promoted an extremely physical game of ice hockey. Through enclosed rink designs and lax rules for fighting, the NHL vectored a culture of extreme violence and packaged the spoils to adoring fans.

NHL faces 2nd concussion lawsuit, which claims that Gordie Howe died in 2009

MDI widow awarded $1.1 million in wrongful death lawsuit against EMMC doctor

Tue, 04/08/2014 - 14:34

By Bill Trotter, BDN Staff

EMMC-Eastern-Maine-Medical-Center-LogoELLSWORTH, Maine — A Bar Harbor woman has been awarded $1.1 million after a jury in a civil trial determined that a doctor at Eastern Maine Medical Center was responsible for her husband’s death.

Thomas Haskell, a real estate appraiser and former sporting goods store owner, was 63 years old when he underwent heart bypass surgery at EMMC on Nov. 9, 2010. He was considered healthy and given a good prognosis for the procedure, according to a complaint filed in Hancock County Superior Court by his widow, Melodie Haskell.

But Tom Haskell had complications after the surgery and experienced significant blood loss, the complaint indicated. He died four days later on Nov. 13, 2010.

Melodie Haskell subsequently filed suit against the Bangor hospital and the two doctors who oversaw her husband’s care, Dr. Francis DiPierro and Dr. Felix Hernandez.

MDI widow awarded $1.1 million in wrongful death lawsuit against EMMC doctor

Family of Killed Bicyclist Files Lawsuit

Sat, 04/05/2014 - 15:44


The family of a Groupon employee who was killed while riding his bike in Old Town has filed a lawsuit against the man accused of crashing into him, and the company he owns.

Bobby Cann was riding home from work in Old Town when he was struck by a vehicle near Larabee and Clybourn. Police say Ryne San Hamel was driving drunk when he hit Cann. He faces charges of DUI and reckless homicide.

Cann’s family is suing San Hamel and the company he owns, Allyoucandrink.com, for negligence and wrongful death.

The web site offers listings of special nightclub events and drink specials in the city.


2nd former Chicago State employee files whistleblower lawsuit

Fri, 04/04/2014 - 15:41

March 26, 2014|By Jodi S. Cohen | Tribune reporter

csu-logoWayne Watson, President of Chicago State University, right, chats with Glenn Meeks, Vice President for Administration and Finance during the executive session of the Board of Trustees on Oct 13, 2011. Meeks has now sued Chicago State, claiming he was fired after he raised concerns about Watson.

A second former employee of Chicago State University has filed a lawsuit against the public institution claiming he was fired in retaliation for reporting alleged misconduct by the school’s president.

The whistleblower lawsuit brought by Glenn Meeks, the university’s former chief financial officer, comes just weeks after the university lost another wrongful termination case and was ordered to pay more than $3 million to a former employee.

Meeks claims he was fired after sharing various concerns about President Wayne Watson with the then-board of trustees’ chairman, Gary Rozier, including allegations that Watson was having a personal relationship with an employee who was hired and promoted after submitting a falsified resume, in violation of the state employees’ ethics act and university policies.

2nd former Chicago State employee files whistleblower lawsuit

Lawsuit: 2 Oak Park women ‘trampled’ at Beyonce concert

Thu, 04/03/2014 - 14:57

By Meredith Rodriguez Tribune reporter 7:28 a.m. CDT, April 3, 2014

Two Cook County women are suing Beyonce, the United Center and Live Nation, saying they were trampled on their way into one of the entertainer’s recent Chicago concerts.

Raquel Castellanos and Gabriella Davidson were near the front a large group of premium general admission ticket holders who began gathering in front of a United Center gate several hours before the Dec. 13 showtime, the lawsuit contends.

Another gate was later opened without explanation, prompting the crowd to shift and leading to the two being trampled, according to the lawsuit.

The Oak Park women, both in their early 20s, feared for their lives, according to the lawsuit and their attorney, Thomas Paris. Castellanos broke her ankle and Davidson was knocked unconscious, Paris said.

Lawsuit: 2 Oak Park women ‘trampled’ at Beyonce concert

Lawsuit: Woman frozen alive in L.A. hospital died trying to escape

Thu, 04/03/2014 - 14:49


By Victoria Kim April 3, 2014, 9:55 a.m.

The family of an 80-year-old woman is suing a Boyle Heights hospital after a pathologist determined that she was “frozen alive,” “eventually woke up” and injured herself as she struggled unsuccessfully to escape, according to court records.

Maria de Jesus Arroyo, 80, was pronounced dead in July 2010 at White Memorial Medical Center in Boyle Heights after suffering a heart attack. When morticians received her body a few days later, they found her body face down, with her nose broken and cuts and bruises to her face, injuries so severe they could not be covered up by makeup, according to court papers.

The 2nd District Court of Appeal on Wednesday overturned a trial judge’s earlier decision to throw out the family’s lawsuit alleging the hospital had mistakenly declared her dead and frozen her while she was still living, reviving the legal claim.


Jury foreman in Chicago State case may have had conflict

Mon, 03/31/2014 - 20:29

Screen Shot 2014-03-31 at 8.25.39 PM
By Jodi S. Cohen and Stacy St. Clair
Tribune reporters
7:34 p.m. CDT, March 31, 2014

The jury foreman in a recent wrongful termination judgment against Chicago State University did not disclose in jury selection that he himself had been sued in a wrongful termination case brought by a relative of a CSU trustee, the Tribune has learned.

The issue could be raised in post-trial motions expected to be filed next week by the public university, which has been ordered to pay more than $3 million to a former employee who claimed he was fired in retaliation for reporting alleged misconduct by top university officials.

Though judges are reluctant to reverse jury decisions, legal experts contend the relationship between the foreman and the trustee’s family could meet the extraordinarily high bar set when evaluating juror conduct during the selection process and whether it warrants a new trial.

Jury foreman in Chicago State case may have had conflict

Blue Line CTA Crash Injuries, Driver Fell Asleep

Mon, 03/24/2014 - 17:09
chicago-blueline-train-injuryUnion chief: Operator of CTA train that crashed ‘might have dozed off’ By Peter Nickeas, Lolly Bowean and Kim Geiger Tribune reporters3:59 p.m. CDT, March 24, 2014

A Blue Line train operator may have fallen asleep shortly before her train jumped the platform at O’Hare International Airport Monday and climbed up an escalator at the end of the line, according to her union representative.

Reports from the scene indicate the driver, whose name has not been released, told people she nodded off moments before the crash, said Robert Kelly, president of Amalgamated Transit Union Local 308.

“I can confirm that she was extremely tired,” Kelly said. “Indications are she might have dozed off.”

More than 30 people were hurt in the crash, though none of the injuries was considered life-threatening.

Lawsuit between UA student, Best Buy sent to mediation

Fri, 03/21/2014 - 15:52

By Ed Enoch Staff Writer Published: Thursday, March 13, 2014 at 4:00 p.m. Last Modified: Thursday, March 13, 2014 at 4:35 p.m.

A lawsuit by a University of Alabama student against Best Buy Stores LP over allegations staff at the company’s Tuscaloosa store improperly copied nude photos of her from her computer has been sent to mediation.

The federal district court judge in the case has instructed the parties to notify the court by Monday of the individuals selected to serve as their mediators, according to an order filed last week.

UA student Nicole A. March filed a civil lawsuit on Aug. 9, 2013, in the Northern District of Alabama. She argued that employees of the store and its technical support service Geek Squad invaded her privacy and breached a customer contract and that the company was negligent in the supervision and training of its employees. The company denies the claims.

Lawsuit between UA student, Best Buy sent to mediation

Versailles Restaurant Slapped With Whistleblower Retaliation and Defamation Lawsuit

Wed, 03/19/2014 - 15:27

By Laine Doss Tue., Mar. 11 2014 at 2:01 PM

Attorneys have filed a lawsuit in Miami-Dade Civil Court that claims Versailles Restaurant fired two employees for reporting illegal goings-on at the iconic eatery, including hiring undocumented workers, sexual-orientation harassment, and wage and hour violations.

The lawsuit, which names Versailles and its owner, Felipe A. Valls Sr., as defendants, was filed this past Friday on behalf of former Versailles general manager Rigoberto Hernandez and Adriam Mena, a former waiter there. The suit lists numerous charges the two men claim they witnessed during their time at the restaurant, which attracts some of Miami’s top politicians. Hernandez claims the restaurant’s human resources officer and co-owner, Janet Valls, said that “she could make the undocumented workers ‘disappear’ if they were ever investigated by immigration authorities.

Versailles Restaurant Slapped With Whistleblower Retaliation and Defamation Lawsuit

Disabled vet filing lawsuit after being shocked with stun gun

Tue, 03/18/2014 - 16:15

Posted: Mar 14, 2014 10:21 AM CST Updated: Mar 14, 2014 12:09 PM CST
By Mike Nelson PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) -

A disabled veteran who says officers shocked him with a stun gun at the Disabled American Veterans Office in Portland is suing the federal government and the officers involved in the incident.

William Bayes, who suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder, came to the DAV office for an appointment in December 2012 using a cane and wearing a brace on each knee. The lawsuit claims as Bayes was going through a security checkpoint, an officer reached into Bayes’ pocket and removed a pocketknife. The officer told Bayes to remove the weapon from the office.

Bayes says he exited the office with the two small pocketknives he was carrying, left them in his truck, and then returned to the security checkpoint. As he began placing his personal items in the plastic tub to go through the security scanner, he says he lifted his shirt to remove a mini-flashlight and an empty knife sheath on his belt.

Disabled vet filing lawsuit after being shocked with stun gun

Skokie police officer sues village, alleges discrimination

Tue, 03/18/2014 - 15:22

il-skokie_optimizedBy: Mike Isaacs | misaacs@pioneerlocal.com | @SKReview_Mike

A Skokie police officer, also a marine who was awarded the Purple Heart during a tour in Iraq, filed a federal lawsuit March 12 against the village and police department, alleging they retaliated against him when he complained about the department’s military leave policy.

In the suit, filed in U.S. District Court in Chicago, officer Baldo Bello said he was forced to use his days off so he could fulfill his duties as a Marine reservist, which would be a violation of the Uniformed Service Employment and Reemployment Rights Act, among others.

A staff sergeant in the U.S. Marine Corps Reserves, Bello is required to attend trainings at least once a month as well as an annual two-week training exercise with his military unit.

Skokie police officer sues village, alleges discrimination

Ex-cop’s words in torture-chamber recording could undermine family’s lawsuit

Tue, 03/18/2014 - 11:49
Gary Engel

Gary Engel

BY KIM JANSSEN Federal Courts Reporter February 25, 2014 8:05PM

Even in death, Gary Engel’s words could come back to haunt his family.

In secretly recorded videos played to a jury in federal court last week, the former Willow Springs cop presented himself as a sadistic and experienced killer, even joking how he’d slice a victim’s genitals like a “banana split.”

The recordings were part of the prosecution’s high-profile case against Engel’s partner-in-crime, Steven Mandell.

Ex-cop’s words in torture-chamber recording could undermine family’s lawsuit

Two workers at care center accused of elderly abuse

Tue, 03/18/2014 - 10:48

March 14, 2014|By Clifford Ward | Special to the Tribune

23423423Two aides at a St. Charles nursing home have been charged for allegedly taking video of themselves striking one of the residents, an elderly woman with dementia, Kane County officials said.

Chemyra Barnett, 18, and Jacqueline Santos, 18, both of South Elgin, appeared in court today, where bond of $15,000 each was set, according to authorities.

Each is charged with one count of aggravated battery of a person older than 60, a class 3 felony, and one count of illegal videotaping, according to St. Charles police.

Rosewood-Logo“It’s just a sad situation all around,” police spokesperson Lisa Blackwell said.

The 96-year-old victim was not injured, police said.

The attack took place Tuesday at the Rosewood Care Center, 850 Dunham Road, police said. Someone reportedly heard about the incident and alerted the nursing home, where officials called police, Blackwell said.

Two workers at care center accused of elderly abuse

Heather Rzany, Luis Cordero Jr. Sue Chicago Police, Alleging Drunk Off-Duty Cop Attacked Them (VIDEO)

Mon, 03/17/2014 - 11:33


The recent release of 911 call audio could help a Chicago couple make their case in a lawsuit alleging police misconduct.

Heather Rzany and her boyfriend Luis Cordero, Jr. say they were accosted by Chicago Police Officer Chris Gofron on June 26, 2010 while Gofron was off duty and intoxicated, WGN reports.

The couple says Gofron attacked them, grabbing Rzany by her neck and sticking a gun in her mouth, hitting Cordero with his weapon and leaving both bloodied, according to photos allegedly taken after the incident.

Heather Rzany, Luis Cordero Jr. Sue Chicago Police, Alleging Drunk Off-Duty Cop Attacked Them (VIDEO)

After lawsuit over young girl’s death, Uber expands driver insurance coverage

Sun, 03/16/2014 - 15:04

uberBy Chris Welch on March 14, 2014 11:54 am

In the wake of tragedy, Uber today announced policy changes that will expand insurance coverage for its drivers in the event they’re involved in an accident. Uber will now cover drivers so long as they’re logged into the company’s smartphone app and available to accept a ride — even if there’s no passenger in the car when an accident occurs. This liability coverage kicks in only if a driver’s personal insurance fails to cover an incident and provides up to $100,000 in bodily injury coverage and $25,000 in property damage.

Uber is taking this step to eliminate any ambiguity while the insurance industry and state governments update policies and regulations for the new world of ridesharing transportation,” the company wrote in a blog post. “We are proud to be the standard bearer on this issue as we believe that this clarity is in the public’s best interest.” But the change also follows Uber‘s darkest hour; on New Year’s Eve, one of the company’s UberX drivers struck and killed a six-year-old girl in San Francisco.

After lawsuit over young girl’s death, Uber expands driver insurance coverage

Miley Cyrus’ Giant Tongue Slide Leads To Lawsuit From Injured Construction Worker

Sat, 03/15/2014 - 14:57

Miley Cyrus’ tongue endured a lot of backlash in the past year, but nothing quite so damaging as a lawsuit — until now. Charles Nicholas Sarris, who was hired to help construct the giant tongue slide upon which Cyrus enters during her Bangerz Tour, filed suit against Los Angeles-based equipment supply company ShowFx Inc. after an on-the-job injury, TMZ reports.

Sarris reportedly fell and hurt himself after the equipment used to construct the tongue gave out. He’s seeking unspecified damages, claiming ShowFx failed to provide proper warnings.

Miley Cyrus’ Giant Tongue Slide Leads To Lawsuit From Injured Construction Worker

Retired Attorney Files Lawsuit For Invasion By Tallahassee Police Department

Fri, 03/14/2014 - 19:49

Updated: Thu 8:29 PM, Mar 13, 2014 By: Law Office of James Cook Email

Tallahassee, FL – A retired attorney is suing Tallahassee Police in federal court for invading his home, screaming orders at him and hand cuffing him, on December 3, 2011. Larry Pelham presented a formal claim to the City last June but the City has not replied. The lawsuit will be filed later today in the Federal District Court in Tallahassee.

On Saturday, December 3, 2011, about 10 p.m., Pelham was working upstairs at his computer at his townhouse at 564 Teal Lane, when he heard footsteps on the stairs. As he turned, the door opened and Pelham was confronted by three police officers pointing firearms. One officer was in a shooter’s crouch. Another officer screamed for Pelham to “Stand up. Turn around, hands over your head.” When Pelham tried to ask what was going on, the officer told him to “shut up.” An officer cuffed the 66-year-old man’s hands behind his back.

Pelham remained handcuffed while one of the officers questioned him. While he was being questioned, the other officers searched the house. Eventually, the handcuffs were removed. During the interrogation, Pelham told the officer he was working on a book when they entered his home. As they were leaving, the officer told Pelham, “Now you have something else to write about.” No one apologized to Pelham.

Retired Attorney Files Lawsuit For Invasion By Tallahassee Police Department

McDonald’s stole wages, workers’ lawsuits say

Fri, 03/14/2014 - 13:08

McDonald'sNEW YORK — McDonald’s workers in three states filed lawsuits against the fast-food chain this week, saying the company engages in a variety of practices to avoid paying them what they’re owed.

The suits in California, Michigan and New York against McDonald’s Corp. and its franchisees come amid growing attention on the country’s widening wealth gap and pay practices in low-wage sectors. While the labor violations outlined in the suit aren’t specific to McDonald’s, lawyers said they targeted the company because it’s an industry leader.

Taken together, the suits seeking class action status could affect roughly 30,000 workers, lawyers said in a conference call arranged by organizers of the recent fast-food protests. The suits seek back pay and other damages.

McDonald’s stole wages, workers’ lawsuits say

Set Phasers to litigate: ‘Trekkie’ lawsuit against Illinois officer moves forward

Thu, 03/13/2014 - 12:37

By Radley Balko March 12 at 2:05 pm

In December 2011, Collinsville, Ill., police officer Michael Reichert pulled over Terrance Huff’s red PT Cruiser on Interstate 70, just outside of St. Louis. That portion of the interstate is commonly known to local defense lawyers as a “forfeiture corridor,” or a place where police agencies target motorists they suspect are smuggling (or perhaps just carrying) drugs in the hope of seizing cash, cars and other property for their departments.

After an alert from Reichert’s drug dog and an exhaustive search of Huff’s car, Reichert found no measurable quantity of drugs (he claimed to have found marijuana “shake”), and sent Huff on his way.

Unfortunately for Reichert, Huff is a documentary filmmaker. He’s also nobody’s pushover. After fighting some resistance from the Collinsville Police Department, Huff obtained dash-camera footage that raised some questions about the stop, the dog alert, Reichert’s questioning of Huff, and Reichert’s history of disciplinary problems as a police officer. It also raised some broader questions about how all of these tactics are used across the country. (I explored some of those questions here.) The incident later inspired a plot line in a 2012 episode of the CBS drama “The Good Wife.”