A motorist claimed that Caltrans negligently
installed a guard-rail, causing it to spear her car in a 15-20 mph
collision, ultimately causing her to lose her leg at the mid-thigh and
become wheelchair-bound most of the time (Bauman v. State of
California, Department of Transporta-tion, Alameda County Superior
Political speech firing
An employee claimed she was wrongfully terminated
in retaliation for speaking up on behalf of a gay co-worker (Hewus v.
Weber Precision Graphics Inc., Orange County Superior Court).
Dodger fans ejected
A family of four sued the Los Angeles Dodgers for
false imprisonment and battery by security guards after one of the
plaintiffs assaulted an usherette (Goodman v. Los Angeles Dodgers, Los
Angeles County Superior Court).
Doctor kickback alleged
Plaintiff alleged medical malpractice and
violation of anti-kickback law against his treating physician and
physical therapist for the physician's undisclosed financial
interest in exercise equipment prescribed (Confidential v.
Confidential, Ventura County Superior Court).
Res ipsa loquitur
An 80-year-old woman attending a church for the
first time suffered a concussion and 100 stitches when a 25-pound
light fixture fell 15 feet onto her head (Stephen v. First United
Methodist Church, Los Angeles County Superior Court).
Boater killed in collision
Two boats collided on the Sacramento Delta
causing serious injuries to a woman who died a few hours later (Quezada
v. Smith, Contra Costa County Superior Court).
Soft tissue injuries
An airport maintenance laborer sued a tour van
company for backing up and knocking him down while he was sweeping the
curb area in front of Terminals 4 and 5 of LAX (Garcia v. Panse U.S.A.
Inc., Los Angeles County Superior Court).
Real estate fraud
A housewife who refinanced her home based on an
oral agreement with a real estate magnate was awarded $1.1 million in
actual damages, $100,000 for emotional distress and $2.5 million in
punitive damages for breach of contract, conversion, breach of
fiduciary duty and constructive fraud (Mondala v. Garlock, San Mateo
County Superior Court).
A public defender brought suit for constructive
termination after blowing the whistle on the illegal and unethical
practices of the public defender's office in its representation of
indigent clients (Moore v. County of Nevada, Nevada County Superior
EDITOR'S NOTE: California Bar Journal
publishes this abbreviated summary of important trials in California
provided by Trials Digest Publishing Inc. For a free complete trial
report on any case listed, call 510/420-1800.