Legal News

'Golden State Killer' Suspect, an Ex-Cop, in Custody

FindLaw Headlines - 2 hours 28 min ago
For at least 10 years, a serial rapist and killer terrorized both Northern and Southern California, committing an estimated 50 rapes in the Sacramento and Contra Costa areas during the mid-1970s and murdering at least 12 people in Orange County and Santa Barbara from 1979 through 1986. Dubbed, at......

Stan Lee Sued by Massage Therapist for Sexual Assault

FindLaw Headlines - 6 hours 25 min ago
Stan Lee has created a lot of iconic characters over the years -- some good, some bad. But in a recent scandal out of Chicago, the Marvel Comics legend is the one at the center of the story, and he is certainly not depicted as the superhero. Rather, Lee is......

Pastor's 'Blessing' Caused Brain Injury, Lawsuit Claims

FindLaw Headlines - 6 hours 30 min ago
Most church-goers expect their place of worship to be a source of healing and spiritual renewal. But one Georgia woman claims her pastor's blessing did far more harm than good when it caused her traumatic brain injury. Now, the woman is suing the church and the pastor as she continues......

Pastor's 'Blessing' Caused Brain Injury, Lawsuit Claims

FindLaw Injury News - 6 hours 30 min ago

Most church-goers expect their place of worship to be a source of healing and spiritual renewal. But one Georgia woman claims her pastor's blessing did far more harm than good when it caused her traumatic brain injury. Now, the woman is suing the church and the pastor as she continues to suffer from the effects of the incident.

Congregant "Slammed the Back of Her Skull"

Yvonne Byrd arrived at Hopewell Missionary Baptist Church in Norcross, GA early on March 5, 2017, to sing in the choir. Bishop William Sheals, 71, began blessing congregants during the second service, and when it was her turn to receive a blessing, Byrd says Sheals "pushed her forehead with such force, that it caused her to fall backward and slam the back of her skull against the hard floor." Other members received their blessing via a simple touch to the head.

Byrd's attorneys say that the blessing knocked her unconscious, although it took some time for other church members to realize she was on the ground and not moving. She had to be treated at a local hospital and spent several weeks at rehab facility. Byrd, a member of the megachurch for 15 years, says she is still recovering from the mild traumatic brain injury.

Pastor "Reckless and Negligent"

Byrd's lawsuit claims that the Hopewell church "had a duty to adequately supervise and train its employees, including Defendant Sheals, as to appropriate and safe physical contact with congregants during church services." It also states that Sheals was reckless and negligent when he gave Byrd the brain-injuring blessing.

Her lawsuit is seeking an unspecified amount of damages for personal injuries, medical expenses, and permanent physical and psychological damages. Neither the church nor the pastor seems to have commented on the lawsuit, except to say that they have not received any formal information on the matter.

Just because someone doesn't intend to inflict harm doesn't mean they shouldn't be held accountable for the result of their actions. If you were injured by someone -- church-related or not -- speak with a personal injury attorney to discuss your options for compensation.

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Citizen's Tip Led to Waffle House Shooter's Arrest

FindLaw Headlines - Tue, 04/24/2018 - 22:47
Alleged Waffle House shooter Travis Reinking is now in custody, after construction worker Lydia French dialed 911 when she spotted him emerging from the woods near her worksite near Nashville, Tennessee. Reinking did not answer questions or provide police with a statement, leaving the motive for the shooting, during......

What Should I Wear to My Court Appearance?

FindLaw Headlines - Tue, 04/24/2018 - 22:44
If you're being sued for no reason or innocent of criminal charges, you want a jury to find in your favor on the merits of the case, not what you happen to be wearing. Then again, if you listen to what criminal defense lawyer Harvey Slovis has to say,......

Trump's Attempt to Delay 'Gas Guzzler' Fines Blocked by Federal Court

FindLaw Headlines - Tue, 04/24/2018 - 16:00
Since 1970 the Environmental Protection Agency has had the authority to set national emissions standards for automakers limiting the hazardous air pollutants from cars. And under prior regulations, manufacturers were fined $55 for each mile per gallon they fell short of annual Corporate Average Fuel Economy targets set by......

Can Police Unlock Phone With Dead Man's Finger?

FindLaw Headlines - Tue, 04/24/2018 - 14:20
With advances in technology come new legal and ethical dilemmas. Animal cloning, space colonization, and DIY gene therapies come to mind. But there are also plenty of legal questions surrounding the use of your basic smartphone. For example, in a new twist, police officers in Florida attempted to unlock a......

Checklist for Licensing Intellectual Property

FindLaw Headlines - Tue, 04/24/2018 - 14:15
You get patents, trademarks, and copyrights so that someone doesn't steal your ideas. But those intellectual property protections can also make some money if someone wants to use your ideas. Licensing your intellectual property can be lucrative, but it can also be a legal headache. So here are some......

Frida Kahlo's Family Tries to Block Frida-Themed Barbie Doll

FindLaw Headlines - Tue, 04/24/2018 - 12:54
If you don't know her work, you at least know her unibrow. Frida Kahlo's popularity has grown over the years, thanks to both her art and her outspoken views on politics and the like. And while one company wants to honor her with a Frida-themed Barbie doll (and make a......

Nation's Largest Private Prison Company Sued for Human Trafficking, Again

FindLaw Headlines - Tue, 04/24/2018 - 12:24
Here's a tip: If your 'voluntary' prison work program offers two choices, either work for your toilet paper, toothpaste, and other hygiene products, or face additional criminal charges and 30 days in solitary confinement, it's not really a voluntary work program. That's just one of the many horrific allegations......

What Are the Pet Adoption Laws in My State?

FindLaw Headlines - Mon, 04/23/2018 - 17:19
Depending on where you live, adding a furry (or feathery, fuzzy, or even scaly) member to your family can be relatively easy. In other states, it might not be so simple. California, for instance, recently restricted sales at pet stores to rescue animals only. And Chicago passed a ban......

Parkland Victim Files Lawsuit Against Gunman and Foster Parents

FindLaw Headlines - Mon, 04/23/2018 - 17:14
No child should have to endure what those at Parkland High School went through during the mass shooting at their school on February 14. Understandably, many are asking questions about how it could have been avoided, whether there were missed warning signs, and how to avoid this type of tragedy......

Parkland Victim Files Lawsuit Against Gunman and Foster Parents

FindLaw Injury News - Mon, 04/23/2018 - 17:14

No child should have to endure what those at Parkland High School went through during the mass shooting at their school on February 14. Understandably, many are asking questions about how it could have been avoided, whether there were missed warning signs, and how to avoid this type of tragedy in the future.

In answer to some of those questions, one of the Parkland victims is suing the gunman, his mother's estate, the family the gunman stayed with, and three mental health facilities. He claims that those entities share some of the responsibility for the shooter's actions that day.

Student Used Own Body as Human Shield

Anthony Borges is a 15-year-old student praised for saving as many as 20 lives when he barricaded a door and used his body to shield classmates as Nikolas Cruz opened fire at the Florida high school, killing 17. Anthony was shot five times through the door and spent seven weeks in the hospital. A third of his lung was removed and he will need additional surgeries.

Suing Parkland Gunman, Others

Borges' parents, Royer Borges and Emely Delfin, filed the lawsuit on Anthony's behalf and are seeking damages over $15,000, attorney's fees, and court costs, among other damages. Included among their claims against Nikolas Cruz, foster parents James and Kimberly Snead, his deceased mother's estate, and three mental health facilities are the following:

  • The Sneads were negligent because Cruz had access to one or more guns while staying with them; and "specifically the AR-15 rifle that he subsequently used in committing the massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School."
  • Henderson Behavioral Health was negligent because they did not hospitalize Cruz after their psychiatric evaluation determined that he was "not a risk to harm himself or anyone else because he was on a treatment plan for ADHD, depression, and autism."
  • Jerome Golden Center for Behavior Health "knew or should have known" that Cruz "suffered from mental illness and was a threat to others." The center's CEO claims they had no contact with Cruz.
  • Lynda Cruz (the gunman's deceased mother) "owed a duty to the public" to have her son properly diagnosed and treated (she reported her son's violent behavior on multiple occasions), and to prevent him from obtaining weapons.

According to Borges' attorney, the Parkland victim also plans to sue the Broward Sheriff's Office, among others.

Too many innocent victims are harmed everyday by the actions and negligence of others. If you've been injured, it might not be clear who the responsible parties are. Speak with an attorney to better understand your rights and legal options.

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Weapons at School (FindLaw's Learn About the Law)

What Do You Do When You Overpay Former Employees?

FindLaw Headlines - Mon, 04/23/2018 - 14:33
Under a program that began in 1991, Milwaukee County employees were allowed to "buyback" seasonal or part-time employment that otherwise would not have been eligible for pension benefits and convert it into pension-worthy time. According to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, around 350 workers paid a total of $2.5 million......

Lawsuit Against Uber's 'Hell' Wiretap Program Mostly Dismissed

FindLaw Headlines - Mon, 04/23/2018 - 14:08
The feud between Uber and Lyft continues with no end in sight. And that's normally a good thing for ride-sharing consumers, because strong competition usually drives prices down. But according to one man's lawsuit, Uber used a wiretap program to lure drivers away from Lyft, increasing Lyft customer wait times,......

Lawsuit Against Online Gun Seller Can Continue, Court Rules

FindLaw Headlines - Mon, 04/23/2018 - 14:04
There's no denying the national debate on gun control has reached a fever pitch in recent months, with more shootings and the media attention that follows. The questions that always arise after these shootings include: How did this person get a gun? Was it obtained legally? Should we change the......

Lawsuit Against Online Gun Seller Can Continue, Court Rules

FindLaw Injury News - Mon, 04/23/2018 - 14:04

There's no denying the national debate on gun control has reached a fever pitch in recent months, with more shootings and the media attention that follows. The questions that always arise after these shootings include: How did this person get a gun? Was it obtained legally? Should we change the law to prevent this type of thing from happening in the future?

After a tragic incident in Wisconsin claimed four lives, investigators learned that the shooter had purchased his gun online. Now, the daughter of one of his victims is suing that website over her mother's murder. And although one court dismissed the case, an appeals court has ruled that the lawsuit against the online gun seller can continue.

A History of Domestic Violence and an Online Gun Purchase

In October of 2012, Radcliffe Haughton opened fire at a Milwaukee-area spa, killing four people, including his estranged wife, Zina Daniel Haughton and himself. But with a history of domestic violence and a restraining order granted just days before the shooting, Haughton was not supposed to have any firearms, according to federal law.

However, Wisconsin law only requires background checks and a 48-hour waiting period for dealer purchases, not private sales. That appears to be why Haughton went online and bought a handgun from a private seller through the website Armslist.com.

Lawsuit: Website Facilitated Illegal Gun Purchases

The lawsuit against the online gun seller was filed by the gunman's stepdaughter, Yasmeen Daniel, and claims that the website design encouraged and facilitated the illegal gun sale and lacked appropriate safeguards. The gunman found the private seller through Armslist, and communicated with him through the website. The actual purchase occurred in a fast food parking lot.

The circuit court had dismissed the case, saying that the website couldn't be held liable for publishing third-party content. However, the Wisconsin Court of Appeals reinstated the lawsuit, ruling that it seeks liability for using a "website design feature to facilitate illegal firearms purchases," which is not protected by state or federal law.

Gun violence affects a lot more people than just those in the stories that make the news. If you've been hurt or threatened by someone with a gun or other weapon, you should report the incident to law enforcement. After that, speak to an attorney about additional steps you can take for your protection and to seek compensation.

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Lance Armstrong Settles USPS Lawsuit for $5M

FindLaw Headlines - Mon, 04/23/2018 - 13:22
When Lance Armstrong admitted to doping five years ago, his sponsors were understandably unhappy. None more so than the United States Postal Service, which paid Armstrong more than $30 million over the course of their six-year sponsorship agreement. USPS sued Armstrong, claiming he had violated the contract and unjustly......

When to Sue a Financial Advisor

FindLaw Headlines - Fri, 04/20/2018 - 15:56
You finally thought you were getting your life together, financially speaking. Paying bills on time, paying down credit card debt, and even trying to set some money aside for retirement. So, you talked to a financial advisor who put together what you thought was a great plan, but now......

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