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Chicago Personal Injury News Blog

Study: Sexual harassment is a real problem in science

Updated by Susannah Locke on July 16, 2014, 2:40 p.m. ET Sexual harassment and assault are problems that no one should have to deal with in the workplace. And according to one new study, even science isn't immune to such problems. "The study is the most in-depth look yet at sexual harassment in science" The paper, published in PLOS ONE, surveyed more than 600 anthropologists, archaeologists, biologists, zoologists, and other scientists about their experiences while doing fieldwork away from the university. And the picture was disturbing — there were many experiences of sexual harassment and assault, as well as little awareness of how to...

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Former Twitter employee alleges age discrimination in lawsuit

By Riley Snyder A former Twitter employee is suing the company, alleging that the social media giant fired him for being too old. The lawsuit was filed by former Twitter employee Peter Taylor, who alleged he was fired last year with no warning and a month after the then-57-year-old underwent surgery to remove kidney stones. The suit says Taylor saved Twitter millions of dollars during its data center expansion and met all performance review standards before he was fired and replaced by workers in their 20s and 30s. Taylor, who worked as Twitter’s manager of data center deployment, said in the suit that his...

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Whitman County assessor faces sexual harassment lawsuit

Kip Hill The Spokesman-Review Whitman County’s longtime assessor is in federal court in Spokane this week, fighting a sexual harassment lawsuit brought by an employee. Joe Reynolds, who has served as assessor in Whitman County since 1991, described his office as “loose” and that employees “talked nasty at times,” according to court filings. Yet Brenda Arthur, who started working for the office in 2000, says Reynolds crossed the line, touching her inappropriately and making several sexually explicit remarks during the past several years. The alleged harassment prompted Arthur to request time off and to seek medical help for physical and emotional distress. Whitman...

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Cleveland settles federal lawsuit with families of police chase victims Timothy Russell, Malissa Williams

By John Caniglia, The Plain Dealer on July 16, 2014 at 2:00 PM CLEVELAND, Ohio – Cleveland has settled a federal lawsuit for an undisclosed amount of money with the families of Timothy Russell and Malissa Williams, who were killed after a 2012 car chase in which police officers fired 137 shots at Russell's car, a judge said Wednesday. U.S. District Judge Dan Aaron Polster said in documents that the settlement is dependent upon a judge's approval in Cuyahoga County Probate Court, where the estates were set up to oversee any awards from the lawsuit. A probate judge would decide whether the...

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Naperville student sued for striking pedestrians in driver’s ed class

By Christy Gutowski Tribune reporter 2:02 p.m. CDT, July 15, 2014 A Naperville teen who struck two pedestrians during a driver’s education class last year has been named in a recent lawsuit. The student is accused in a DuPage County lawsuit of striking a teen and her friend last July 12, 2013 in Naperville. The suit also names the father of the motorist, since she is a minor, and Indian Prairie School District 204, which owns the vehicle involved in the accident. According to the police report, the 15-year-old Waubonsie Valley High School student had just made a right turn when she “somehow...

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Kansas City woman files lawsuit against Monster Energy Drink after husband’s death

Amy Hawley A Kansas City woman launches the latest lawsuit against Monster Energy Drink. Heather Felts said her husband, Shane, died after consuming about one energy drink a day for two weeks. The drink's manufacturer, she said, touts the energy drink as a dietary supplement when there are few to no documented health benefits. Felts said her husband consumed Monster Energy Drinks for just two weeks. Kansas City woman files lawsuit against Monster Energy Drink after husband's death...

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Lawsuit over 1996 car crash leads to $18 million award

By The Associated Press on July 13, 2014 READING, Pa. (AP) — An insurance company that was tongue-lashed in a decision last month by a Pennsylvania judge is contesting his ruling that it pay $18 million in punitive damages after a long court battle over faulty repairs to a family's vehicle in 1996. Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co. on Friday asked Berks County Judge Jeffrey K. Sprecher to reconsider a decision believed to be the largest punitive award ever handed down in Pennsylvania in a lawsuit accusing an insurer of bad faith, the Philadelphia Inquirer (http://bit.ly/1nkxYqP ) reported Sunday. Sprecher ruled in June that...

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Tracy Morgan released from care, files lawsuit against Walmart

Comic and actor Tracy Morgan files suit against Walmart over a New Jersey highway crash Actor Tracy Morgan has been released from a rehabilitation center and will continue his recovery at home, a representative for the comedian said Saturday. The news came after Morgan filed a lawsuit against Walmart Stores Inc. over the New Jersey highway crash that left one man dead and several injured last month. The lawsuit, filed Thursday in U.S. District Court in New Jersey by Morgan and three other survivors of the crash, claims Walmart was negligent when the driver of one of its tractor trailers struck Morgan's limousine. James McNair,...

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Mom sues third-grader and parents for alleged bullying

A suburban mother has filed a lawsuit claiming an elementary-school student bullied and beat up her son, a third-grader at the same Mount Prospect school. In the lawsuit, which also identifies the boy as a plaintiff, Deveri Del Core, claims there was "continuous" bullying of her son throughout the 2013-14 school year. The lawsuit filed in Cook County Circuit Court Tuesday said the boy was hit, punched, choked, elbowed, kicked, pushed, tripped and spat on on a weekly basis by another student. Both were third-grade students at Robert Frost Elementary School in Mount Prospect, although the two boys were in different classes. The...

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Father Trapped in County Jail Considers Lawsuit

Man seeks surveillance footage and witness statements from jail A man who was trapped in a room for more than 30 hours while trying to visit his son at Cook County Jail over the weekend is seeking surveillance footage and witness statements ahead of a potential lawsuit against the county. Farad Polk visited the jail early Saturday evening to see his son, who shares the same name, according to the petition for discovery filed Thursday in Cook County Circuit Court. His son had been transferred from the Division 11 holding area at 3015 S. Calfornia Blvd. to Division 9 -- an area he’d...

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Ohio brothers get $235,000 in patrol crash lawsuit

The Associated Press 2:01 a.m. EDT July 10, 2014 COLUMBUS, Ohio -- The State Highway Patrol has reached a $235,000 settlement in a lawsuit by two southwest Ohio brothers who alleged their vehicle was hit by a patrol car traveling over 95 mph while not using overhead lights or sirens. The Ohio Court of Claims approved the settlement for the brothers Tuesday. Ohio brothers get $235,000 in patrol crash lawsuit...

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St. Paul to settle police officer’s sexual harassment lawsuit for $60,000

By Emily Gurnon The city of St. Paul will pay a former police officer $60,000 to settle a sexual harassment lawsuit she filed last year. Sgt. Aine M. Bebeau claimed that her juvenile unit supervisor, Cmdr. Eugene Polyak, made "inappropriate sexual statements to her" at work and that department brass retaliated against her when she reported it. She also claimed she was subjected to a hostile work environment and discrimination as a Native American woman. Between September and November 2010, Polyak complained to Bebeau about his marital problems, told her he became aroused when thinking about her, reported on "erotic dreams" she inspired and...

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Ex-employee settles lawsuit with Milk Shake Factory

By Brian Bowling Friday, July 11, 2014, 11:36 a.m. A former general manager of The Milk Shake Factory on Carson Street has settled her lawsuit claiming she was fired for refusing to discriminate against male and minority job applicants. Denise Beloncis, 44, of Crafton Heights said in the lawsuit that her supervisor at Edward Marc Chocolatier told her to hire the “all-American girl,” which in this case meant a blonde, blue-eyed college graduate, preferably from Duquesne University. The company fired her after three months on the job because she was hiring people who didn't fit the criteria, the lawsuit said. The Trafford-based company...

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City of Charlotte settles lawsuit over police shooting for $115,000

By Michael Gordon For the second time this year, the city of Charlotte has settled a lawsuit arising from a police shooting – this one involving a 15-year-old who was wounded in 2010 as he came to the aid of his injured mother. The city will pay $115,000 to Jeffery Green. He was shot in October 2010 by Charlotte-Mecklenburg police Officer Matthew Wilson, who was responding to the stabbing of Green’s mother, Valinda Streater. Wilson remains on the force. Green, who recovered from his injuries, is enrolled as a nursing student at Central Piedmont Community College. City of Charlotte settles lawsuit over police shooting...

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Lafayette officer facing federal lawsuit after wheelchair incident

LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) – A Lafayette man has filed a federal lawsuit after a police officer pushed him over in a wheelchair. The suit was filed in the U.S. District Court of Northern Indiana on behalf of 25-year-old Nicholas Kincade on Thursday. Kincade was in a motorized wheelchair after being in an accident. The lawsuit said in October of 2013, Lafayette Police Department officer Tom Davidson was called to investigate Kincade. He said Davidson searched his backpack without a warrant. Lafayette officer facing federal lawsuit after wheelchair incident...

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Chicago files suit against major narcotics makers

[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="600"] The City of Chicago has filed suit against five of the world's largest narcotics manufacturers. (Getty Images / June 2, 2014)[/caption] By Peter Frost Tribune staff reporter 8:29 a.m. CDT, June 3, 2014 The City of Chicago has filed suit against five of the world’s largest narcotics manufacturers, accusing the companies of concealing the health risks associated with a class of potent painkillers in order to boost profits. Filed in Cook County Circuit Court on Monday, the suit contends the drugmakers violated city ordinances and other laws against false advertising, conspiracy, insurance fraud and consumer fraud by "knowingly and...

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Why Former Bears tackle Keith Van Horne is Suing the NFL

Former Bears tackle Keith Van Horne is battling heart conditions and bouts of extreme dizziness. He blames team doctors for issuing excessive doses of painkillers and no warning about the risks Three weeks ago, another lawsuit was directed at the NFL. Eight retired players were named in a class-action complaint (Marcellus Wiley was later added as a ninth) alleging that the league is responsible for fostering a culture of drug misuse that led to long-term health issues and personal losses for players over several decades. The 85-page filing details teams’ practices of distributing narcotics, anti-inflammatory drugs and local anesthetics without disclosing...

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‘Dixmoor 5′ Settle Lawsuit Against State Police For $40M

Mike Krauser CHICAGO (CBS) – Five men wrongfully convicted of rape and murder in the infamous “Dixmoor 5” case have agreed to settle their federal lawsuit against Illinois State Police for $40 million. WBBM Newsradio’s Mike Krauser reports attorneys for James Harden, Jonathan Barr, Robert Taylor, Robert Veal, and Shainne Sharp planned to formally announce the settlement agreement on Wednesday. The men were imprisoned as teenagers after they were convicted for the 1991 rape and murder of 14-year-old Cateresa Matthews, who disappeared after leaving her grandmother’s home on Nov. 19, 1991. Her body was found weeks later in a field near Interstate 57....

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Wrigley rooftops lose defamation lawsuit

A Cook County judge has thrown out a defamation lawsuit filed by owners of several Wrigley Field rooftop buildings against sports consultant Marc Ganis. Circuit Judge William Gomolinski ruled today that Mr. Ganis' words were constitutionally protected free expression and that they did not damage owners' ability to do business. The judge dismissed a case in which 18 rooftop owners alleged that the SportsCorp Ltd. president made false statements to the Chicago Sun-Times about their relationship with the Chicago Cubs. "This is a total and complete rebuke of the rooftop owners in their lawsuit against me," Mr. Ganis said today, going a...

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Dating app Tinder sued for sexual harassment

Jessica Guynn, USATODAY 9:55 p.m. EDT June 30, 2014 SAN FRANCISCO — Popular mobile dating app Tinder is being sued for sexual harassment and discrimination by a former marketing executive. Whitney Wolfe, Tinder's former marketing vice president, claims she was subjected to a pattern of abusive behavior including inappropriate private messages from a company co-founder while working at Tinder. In the suit, she alleges Tinder co-founder and marketing chief Justin Mateen stripped Wolfe of her co-founder title, telling her that having a "24‐year-old girl" as a co-founder made the company "seem like a joke." Dating app Tinder sued for sexual harassment  ...

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Husband of Chicago bicyclist fatally struck files lawsuit

By Mitch Smith Tribune reporter 7:28 p.m. CDT, June 26, 2014 The husband of a bicyclist killed in a hit-and-run collision on the South Side last month is suing the driver charged with driving the van that killed the man's wife. Su Ai Xie died May 29 just minutes after a vehicle hit her in the Bridgeport neighborhood and continued on its way, officials said at the time. Two hours after the crash, police arrested Gabriel Herrera, 65. Witnesses wrote down the license plate number of the van that hit Xie, prosecutors said, and police found the vehicle parked just around the corner...

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Family of man left alone in ER after asthma attack wins $7M judgment

BY LISA DONOVAN Cook County Reporter ldonovan@suntimes.com August 1, 2012 8:26PM A Cook County jury has awarded $7 million to the family of a Chicago man who was being treated for an asthma attack but was left alone in a local hospital emergency room where he suffered brain and other injuries that eventually killed him. The award, delivered Tuesday, came after a three-week trial stemming from the wrongful death and medical malpractice lawsuit Michael Bell’s wife filed after his 2006 death. Bell, a longtime asthmatic, suffered an attack at his Southwest Side home on July 14, 2002, said Kevin Burke, the lawyer for...

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Ex-Des Plaines cop says reporting misconduct cost him his job

Lawsuit says former deputy chief forced into retirement By Jonathan Bullington, Chicago Tribune reporter August 17, 2012 A former Des Plaines deputy police chief has sued the city and its former and current top officials, claiming he was forced to retire as retaliation for reporting the alleged misconduct of a police officer. In the recently filed federal lawsuit, Richard Rozkuszka, 54, claims that he reported to former police Chief James Prandini five separate instances of misconduct by police Officer John Bueno, and that he was told each time by Prandini to "drop it." Prandini, who retired Jan. 1, could not be reached for comment...

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Ex-Daley security officers sue over transfers

Replacements had worked for Emanuel's campaign, cops allege By Annie Sweeney, Chicago Tribune reporter 6:51 a.m. CDT, August 16, 2012 Eleven Chicago police officers who were removed from Mayor Rahm Emanuel's security detail when he took office have filed a federal lawsuit alleging they were replaced by officers who had volunteered on the mayor's campaign. The officers, who are white or Hispanic, also alleged discrimination, saying African-American officers on the detail with less seniority were not demoted at the time. The lawsuit contended that police Cmdr. Brian Thompson, in charge of the security detail, and the city violated Chicago's decades-old Shakman decree, which prohibits...

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Judge tosses lawsuit over FBI surveillance of California mosques

August 14, 2012|By Dan Whitcomb | Reuters LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - A federal judge on Tuesday dismissed a lawsuit charging that the FBI violated civil liberties by sending an informant into several California mosques to spy on U.S. Muslims, ruling that allowing the case to proceed could risk disclosure of government secrets. U.S. District Judge Cormac Carney wrote in a 36-page order that he was reluctant to toss out the case before it could be litigated but was forced to weigh national security against individual liberties and an open judicial process. In the decision, Carney compared himself to the fictional Greek hero Odysseus,...

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Many luxury cars flunk new type of crash test

When a car's front corner hits something, what happens? The driver often gets seriously injured, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety's new crash test finds. By Jerry Hirsch Chicago Tribune reporter Results of a new crash test that focused on luxury cars are raising worries that most vehicles may not be able to provide protection from serious injuries in a common accident. Such fancy nameplates as BMW, Mercedes and Lexus all earned "poor" ratings in a test that simulated what happens when the front corner of a sedan hits another vehicle or an object such as a tree or pole, according to the...

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Ex-judge wants more from CHA settlement in 3-year-old’s death

BY TIM NOVAK Staff Reporter tnovak@suntimes.com August 12, 2012 11:24PM I t’s been four years since an iron gate fell at a Chicago Housing Authority project, crushing 3-year-old Curtis Cooper as he pedaled his tricycle. But the legal battles that arose following the little boy’s death continue, now extending longer than his entire life. After Curtis’ death, his mother, Pamela Cooper, filed a wrongful-death lawsuit that she has settled for $2 million with the CHA and its former property-management company, Urban Property Advisors — a deal she struck after dropping former CHA chairman Martin Nesbitt and the family of Allison S. Davis, the...

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Lawsuit filed over fatal Megabus crash near Union Station

BY TINA SFONDELES Transportation Reporter tsfondeles@suntimes.com August 10, 2012 1:10PM Lawyers for the family of a 76-year-old woman killed by a Megabus outside Union Station this week are questioning whether bus drivers for the company are being properly trained on the dangers of blind spots while making left turns. Donna Halstead’s death on Tuesday while crossing near Canal and Adams is “remarkably similar” to what happened to Wes Krueger in 2010, according to Dan Kotin, a Corboy & Demetrio attorney representing Halstead’s family in their wrongful death case. “Whether these are just coincidental tragedies, I don’t know,” Kotin said. “But there’s an awful...

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Homeland Security Secretary Napolitano favored women pals for jobs: lawsuit

By BRUCE GOLDING Last Updated: 6:10 AM, August 10, 2012 A veteran US law-enforcement official has filed a blockbuster discrimination lawsuit against Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, charging she pushed him aside to make way for a less-qualified woman who’s “enjoyed a long-standing relationship” with the anti-terror chief. That woman, Dora Schriro, was later appointed by Mayor Bloomberg as commissioner of the city Department of Correction, a post she still holds. The court papers also allege that Suzanne Barr, Napolitano’s chief of staff at Immigration and Customs Enforcement, has engaged in “numerous” acts of “sexually offensive behavior” intended to “humiliate and intimidate male...

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