State Bar of California California Bar Journal
Home Page Official Publication of the State Bar of California June2006
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Labor Code violations
Award: $22,000,000

Current and former employees of Smart & Final brought a class action suit for failure to pay overtime and provide meal or rest breaks (Olivas v. Smart & Final Stores Corp., Orange County Superior Court).

Reverse discrimination
Award: $540,000

A men’s basketball coach at a California State University claimed that he was terminated from his position because an African-American candidate had been earmarked for his job (Terpstra v. The Board of Trustees of California State University, Stanislaus County Superior Court).

Elder abuse
Award: Defense

The family of an Alzheimer’s patient alleged that his death at a nursing facility was due to abuse and neglect (McRaven v. Waterman Convalescent Hospital, San Bernardino County Superior Court).

Chain-reaction accident
Award: $4,479,733

Three members of a family were injured when their vehicle was struck by an 18-wheel big rig during a chain-reaction freeway accident (Modica v. Riddle, Alameda County Superior Court).

Sexual orientation
Award: $300,000

Two high school students alleged that they were repeatedly subjected to harassment, discrimination and intimidation by students, staff and faculty on the basis of their actual or perceived sexual orientation (Donovan v. Poway Unified School District, San Diego County Superior Court).

Industrial accident
Award: $8,000,000

A 40-year-old worker repairing a street sign in a bucket truck was injured when a tractor-trailer struck the bucket and knocked him 15 feet to the pavement (Nguyen v. El Modena Gardens, Orange County Superior Court).

Dog bite
Award: $211,325

A woman was attacked by a dog in the home of a man who invited her in after their first date (Burd v. Fierravanti, Santa Clara County Superior Court).

Disability discrimination
Award: Defense

A manager at a Red Robin restaurant alleged that his employer refused to accommodate his requests for changes in working conditions due to chronic pancreatitis (Cipolletti v. Top Robin Ventures Inc., Los Angeles County Superior Court).

Racial discrimination
Award: $1,640,945

A 23-year veteran police officer alleged a long pattern of harassment and discrimination by the Riverside Police Department based on his race (Sutton v. City of Riverside Police Department, Riverside 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.
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