Fencing foreman disabled in 16-foot fall in L.A.
Award: $22,650,000

A fencing company foreman working without a safety harness at the L.A. Coliseum fell and landed on his neck. This may be the largest verdict for a quadriplegic in California (Francois v. Tutor-Saliba Corporation, Los Angeles County Superior Court).

Woman claims SWAT team discrimination
Award: $2,300,000

A 35-year-old woman claimed that the City of Los Angeles denied her a position and then forced her resignation after she filed a grievance and lawsuit (Damianakes v. City of Los Angeles, Los Angeles County Superior Court).

Waterbed invention misappropriated
Award: $95,000,000

General Bedding Corp. claimed that its employee and Somma Mattress conspired to misappropriate the multiple-tube waterbed invention and split the profits, excluding plaintiff (General Bedding Corp. v. Echevarria, Central District Federal Court).

Family claims malpractice at UCLA Med Center
Award: $1,137,500

A patient's wife and children alleged that his heart was perforated by a chest tube and that his remains were mishandled (Mendoza-Vega v. Regents of the University of California, Los Angeles County Superior Court).

Police dog bites shooting suspect
Award: Defense

A 24-year-old unemployed man claimed that police use of a dog in a drive-by shooting investigation was excessive force (Rivera v. City of Santa Monica, Los Angeles County Superior Court).

Woman's leg severed
Award: $1,400,000

A woman waiting at the San Leandro BART station fainted and fell onto the tracks. She claimed the train operator hit her because he was under the influence of marijuana (Porter v. Bay Area Rapid Transit District, Alameda County Superior Court).

Insurer denies benefits
Award: $4,700,000

A chiropractor claimed that defendant insurer breached its contract by denying him total disability benefits after he injured his back (Shohet v. The Paul Revere Life Insurance Co., San Diego County Superior Court).

Malpractice, fraud claimed
Award: $1,130,000

A shipping clerk alleged that her attorney settled her claim without authority, waived her rights under the ADA and was negligent regarding the statute (Hall v. Davis, Los Angeles County Superior Court).

Collision causes severe hand injuries
Award: $3,650,597

A KTVU camera operator was struck by an Olan Mills employee who ran a red light and broadsided plaintiff's truck (Douglas v. Knott, Alameda County Superior Court).

Deliveryman injured during armed robbery
Award: $1,109,539

A salesman delivering bread claimed he was assaulted due to Convenient Catering Company's failure to provide reasonable security (Owens v. Convenient Catering Company, Los Angeles County Superior Court).

Oil spill disrupts motel business
Award: $1,062,350

The owner of the Surfside Motel claimed that Unocal's negligence in maintaining its pipelines caused a crude oil spill in Avila Beach (Morrison v. Unocal Oil Company of California, San Luis Obispo County Superior Court).

Rock smashes windshield, fractures skull
Award: Defense

A legal secretary claimed that the state and the City of Los Angeles were responsible for a rock coming through her windshield on the freeway and striking her in the head (Kimble v. State of California, Los Angeles County Superior Court).

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.