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Chicago Personal Injury News Blog

Illinois partners with feds to enforce protections against housing discrimination

by Gary Barlow Chicago, IL — While Congress has dragged its feet on passing laws prohibiting discrimination in employment based on sexual orientation and gender identity, the Obama administration has implemented new federal rules that prohibit discrimination in housing, at least when federal funds are involved. That, in turn, has made it easier to enforce Illinois' prohibition against such discrimination, thanks to a strong partnership fostered by Illinois officials and the Obama administration. In February the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development published a new regulation that prohibits HUD-funded and HUD-insured housing providers, as well as FHA-approved lenders, from basing eligibility determinations...

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City Hall janitor sues for sexual harassment

CHICAGO (WLS) - A woman filed a federal lawsuit Thursday against a City of Chicago employee who allegedly took semi-nude photographs of her as she changed in his City Hall office. The woman claims she was working for Triad Consulting Services, a janitorial company assigned to clean City Hall, when the man offered her his office to change in and then secretly photographed her, according to a suit filed in U.S. District Court in Chicago. The man offered the woman his office to change in, which she accepted because she had no other place to change, according to the suit. City Hall janitor...

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Monsanto Faced with Paying 7.5 Billion Back to Farmers

Anthony Gucciardi NaturalSociety June 20, 2012 Monsanto may soon be forced to pay as much as 7.5 billion dollars back to the farmers who say that the mega corporation took their rightfully earned income and taxed their small businesses to financial shambles. It all started with a monumental lawsuit launched by over 5 million farmers against Monsanto looking to recover financial losses from ridiculous seed taxes that bankrupted many families. Back in April, a Brazilian court ruled that Monsanto absolutely was responsible for paying back the exorbitant amounts of cash back to the farmers, ordering the company to issue back all of...

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2 injured in motorcycle crash in DeKalb

A man was charged with DUI and a woman was seriously injured in a motorcycle crash Sunday night in DeKalb. Matthew Bean, 32, of the 300 block of West Sycamore Street, of DeKalb, was charged with DUI, improper lane use, no insurance and failure to reduce speed, according to a press release from the DeKalb County Sheriff's Office. Police responded about 9 p.m. to Old State Road east of Larson Road and found the motorcycle, a 2007Harley-Davidson, in a ditch. An investigation revealed Bean had gone off the roadway and lost control of his motorcycle in a ditch, according to the release. 2...

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Milwaukee Pit Bull Jumps Off Balcony, Attacks Dog Walker and Dog

A Milwaukee, Wisconsin, dog walker and his wife were walking their own dog on Saturday, June 16, about 5:00 p.m. when a Pit Bull jumped from a second-floor balcony to attack their pet. The incident occurred in the 4200 block of W. Capitol Drive on Milwaukee’s north side. The 55-year-old man is still in St. Joseph’s Hospital with serious bite wounds after he wrestled the Pit Bull off his dog. Police sent an e-mail saying the victim had more than 30 punctures on his arms, face, legs and torso and will require surgery, according to Fox11online.com. "The dog really attacked him everywhere,"...

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Wait. A Business Can Be Sued for NOT Hiring Criminals?

Many small businesses did not know it was illegal to impose a ban on hiring anybody with a criminal record. “I was not aware of that one,” said Brian Hamilton, who owns four car dealerships in Nebraska. By ROBB MANDELBAUM Published: June 20, 2012 In April, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission signaled that it would begin to crack down on employers who use the criminal histories of job applicants to discriminate against them illegally. Is a candy company that gives tours to children taking a risk if it does not hire criminals? But to judge from conversations with business owners, labor lawyers and human resources...

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Substance Use and Medical Malpractice

For a doctor, nurse, or other hospital staff member to properly diagnose and treat medical disorders, they must have their wits about them. PHILADELPHIA, PA, June 15, 2012 /24-7PressRelease/ -- For a doctor, nurse, or other hospital staff member to properly diagnose and treat medical disorders, they must have their wits about them. Keeping a clear head means refraining from using substances such as narcotics and alcohol that can slow response times and hamper good judgment. Disturbingly, some studies have found that alcohol use is rampant among healthcare practitioners while on-call or on-duty. Additionally, prescription narcotics accessed through hospitals have been...

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Judge denies government’s motion to dismiss wrongful death suit

June 04, 2012 6:45 pm, By Sarah Tompkins sarah.tompkins@nwi.com, (219) 836-3780 HAMMOND | A federal judge denied the government's motion to dismiss the wrongful death suit of an alleged Latin Dragon gang member whom an officer shot and killed during an attempted arrest in 2007. Rosalio Rincon was 28 when he was killed near Hobart's Westfield Southlake mall. He had recently been indicted on cocaine distribution charges, and a local Drug Enforcement Agency-led task force was trying to execute an arrest warrant for Rincon. The original plan was to arrest Rincon in the early morning at one of the residences he frequented, according...

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Boy on bike struck by school bus, injured in Humboldt Park

By Liam Ford Tribune reporter 8:34 p.m. CDT, May 22, 2012 A 14-year-old boy on a bicycle was struck by a bus on a residential street in the Humboldt Park neighborhood and injured, relatives of the boy and officials said. Fire Department paramedics took the child to Children's Memorial Hospital in serious-to-critical condition about 4 p.m., said fire spokeswoman Meg Ahlheim. The boy was later treated in good condition for lacerations to his leg, police said. The child was on a bicycle when struck by a bus in the 3200 block of West Hirsch Street, she said. Boy on bike struck by school bus,...

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Radiohead stage collapse: One man dead in Downsview Park incident, concert cancelled

Niamh Scallan, Josh Tapper and Graham Slaughter Staff Reporters The grassy venue inside Toronto's Downsview Park was a flurry of activity late Saturday afternoon. As staff went about their final preparations, a crush of Radiohead fans waited to flood the gates for the sold-out evening concert. Inside the beer tent, Oana Damian, 23, and a handful of other workers had just sat down for a meeting with their employer around 4 p.m. when she heard a loud, crackling sound — like “fireworks” — coming from the stage area. Damian turned around and watched in horror as the stage's back scaffolding began to twist...

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Motorcyclist killed in collision with car in Libertyville

Preliminary indication shows car driver at fault, police say By John P. Huston, Chicago Tribune reporter June 15, 2012 A 79-year-old Mount Prospect man was killed when a car collided with the motorcycle he was riding in Libertyville. William Thedorf Sr. was riding a Harley-Davidson at Winchester Road and U.S. Route 45 in Libertyville when he was hit by a Volkswagen driven by an 18-year-old Mundelein man about 11:50 p.m. Wednesday, said Libertyville police Sgt. Dennis Meserve. Thedorf was southbound on Route 45 while the other driver, headed north, waited to turn left onto Winchester while a train was blocking the turn as it...

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Editorial: Fighting racism doesn’t justify busting heads

If a bunch of anti-racists bust into a restaurant and beat up a bunch of racists, they are not noble, heroic or in any way admirable, motivation not withstanding. They are law-breaking brawlers. But that seems quite the opposite of the message being sent by several attorneys who have signed on to represent, for free, five Indiana men accused of busting up a meeting last month that they believed had been organized by white supremacists. The lawyers took the case, they said, because they believe in fighting racism. Editorial: Fighting racism doesn’t justify busting heads ...

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Pregnant woman cries, announces suit over Taser incident with cops

BY NATASHA KORECKI Federal Courts Reporter nkorecki@suntimes.com June 14, 2012 4:00PM A Chicago woman who was eight months pregnant when she said a Chicago Police officer shocked her with a Taser over a parking ticket dispute, broke down in tears on Thursday as she explained what it felt like going through the ordeal. Tiffany Rent told reporters at a news conference that when she was hit with the Taser she felt “a tense feeling,” over her body, she fell over and began shaking. Her two children, she said, witnessed the incident. Rent said it happened on June 5 and Thursday her attorneys...

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Motorcyclist killed by motorist involved in unrelated ‘road rage’ incident

Staff report 2:48 a.m. CDT, June 14, 2012 A motorcyclist from Lombard was killed by another motorist involved in a "road rage" incident with another driver, Naperville police said. Killed was Gerald W. Puglise, 63, of the 2200 block of Highland Avenue in Lombard, according to Naperville police. The incident unfolded just after 5 p.m. Wednesday at the intersection of Ogden Avenue and River Road, authorities said. Motorcyclist killed by motorist involved in unrelated 'road rage' incident...

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WHO’s Behind H.R. 4369?

ALEC and ILR have assisted the asbestos industry in covering up the dangers of asbestos, villainizing the victims, misleading the public with propaganda and working to limit accountability through legislation. H.R. 4369 is part of a campaign to let the asbestos industry off the hook by burying the system in paperwork and delaying justice until victims die: State legislation: In 2007, ALEC adopted the “Asbestos Claims Transparency Act.” This legislation has been introduced in OH, OK, LA, TX, and WV. Judicial Conference: On November 22, 2010, ILR made a direct appeal to the Judicial Conference to change the rules governing bankruptcy law. Federal legislation:...

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U.S. drug recalls common, not well publicized: study

June 04, 2012, Andrew M. Seaman, Reuters NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recalls potentially harmful drugs about once every month, but they could be doing a better job of letting doctors and patients know about them, says a new study. Over an eight-year span, researchers found that the FDA failed to send notifications for one in five of the most serious recalls through its two electronic systems used to alert doctors and the public. The so called Class I recalls, according to the FDA, are issued for drugs that, if taken, have the potential to cause...

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Daley appointee: Working for the taxpayers while suing them

A former Cook County prosecutor, Bobb is one of Chicago’s top female trial lawyers. She spends most of her time at her law practice, handling personal-injury cases. Even as she worked as the commission’s part-time inspector general, Bobb began representing Shelley Davis and her husband Omar Roberts, in a lawsuit against City Hall. Davis and Roberts were injured five years ago when a 50-pound chunk of concrete fell from a viaduct downtown and landed inside their car. Bobb argued that City Hall knew concrete had been falling from the viaduct, but “they just didn’t do anything” to fix it. The city...

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Wrongful death lawsuit in 2011 drowning at Geneva dam

By Harry Hitzeman Relatives of a Naperville man who died last August saving a child from drowning near a dam along the Fox River in Geneva has sued the city for wrongful death, arguing the city knew about the dangers posed by the lowhead dam but did not do enough to restrict access to that area. Randy Suchy, 59, died Aug. 5, 2011, saving a 12-year-old boy who slipped and fell into the water during a church outing. The Bolingbrook boy was rescued, but Suchy was caught in the boil for several minutes despite rescuers’ efforts to save him. Wrongful death lawsuit in 2011...

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United Continental Sued by Black Pilots Alleging Bias

United Continental Holdings Inc. (UAL) (UAL), the world’s largest airline, was sued for racial discrimination by 22 black pilots who allege the company offers minority employees fewer promotions to upper management than whites. The company’s “highly subjective decision making” about promotions discriminates against minority captains and operations supervisors, according to a complaint filed today in federal court in San Francisco. Minority captains are subject to a “dual employment track” and relegated to part-time jobs with less job security and opportunity for promotions, while non- minority employees get full-time, higher wage positions, the pilots said in the complaint. Virtually all black employees at...

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3 burned in southern Illinois silo explosion awarded a total of $180 million

3 burned in southern Illinois silo explosion awarded a total of $180 million By Andy Grimm, Chicago Tribune reporter June 5, 2012 Three workers who were badly burned in a 2010 grain elevator explosion in southern Illinois are to split a $180 million jury award. John W. Jentz, Robert Schmidt and Justin Becker were on a crew cleaning out a grain bin in Chester, south of St. Louis, that, unbeknown to them, had been smoldering for days and exploded while the three were removing their tools, said Robert Clifford, lawyer for Jentz and Schmidt. After a month long trial and 10 hours of deliberations,...

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Settlement reached in motorcyclist’s crash death

City to pay $1.55 Million settlement in officer-involved accident The father of a man killed when an Indianapolis police officer's cruiser crashed into his motorcycle said the family has reached a $1.55 million settlement with the city in their wrongful death lawsuit. Aaron Wells told The Indianapolis Star the settlement in his son Eric Well's death doesn't make him feel better but it helps "any time you can put something behind you in this whole matter." Wells said the family's suit was on appeal in the U.S. Court of Appeals in Chicago. Settlement reached in motorcyclist's crash death...

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CPS Employee Says Supervisor Sexually Harassed Her Repeatedly

CHICAGO (CBS) — A woman who works for the Chicago School Board is suing her employer and her supervisor claiming she was regularly sexually harassed at work for more than a year. As WBBM Newsradio’s David Roe reports, the woman filed suit against the Board of Education Thursday in U.S. District Court. She says her supervisor sent her sexually suggestive messages and made inappropriate sexual comment, and even made her change her work habits so he could be around her more. The woman, who works as a youth outreach worker for the Board of Education, claims her supervisor repeatedly told her the...

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Race Discrimination, or Just Workplace Conflict?

An Illinois material handler testified that he’d been treated badly throughout his 4 years of employment. And, he said, it was all because he is African American. But his employer disagreed, saying he deserved the discipline he was given. What happened. “Lennon” drove a forklift for Jacobson Transportation Co., a third-party logistics firm, at its Chicago Heights warehouse. For the first year of his employment, from 2003 to 2004, he was on the day shift with two supervisors. He later said they made fun of him, but the taunting wasn’t race-based. Then he was put on the night shift as the...

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Most medical malpractice claims litigated, but few go to trial: Study

Most medical malpractice claims lead to litigation, but a majority of these are dismissed, and more than three-quarters of the relatively few against specialists that lead to a trial verdict are resolved in the physician's favor, says a new study. The study, whose lead researcher was Dr. Anupam B. Jena of Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School in Boston, appears in the Chicago-based American Medical Assn.'s current issue of Archives in Internal Medicine. The study examined all claims closed between 2002 and 2005 that involved some defense costs. Among all claims, 55.2% resulted in litigation, ranging from 46.7% for claims against...

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Father of teen killed on camping trip sues tour company

The father of a Lake Forest teen killed by a falling tree while on a student camping trip in Wyoming last summer has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the tour operators. Elizabeth Burns of Lake Forest was helping set up camp in Wyoming’s Teton Wilderness about 66 feet away from the base of a 75-foot tree when the tree fell and struck her. She never regained consciousness, witnesses said. Her father, Michael Burns, filed the federal wrongful death lawsuit in Chicago on Wednesday against Wilderness Ventures, the commercial backpacking company based in Jackson Hole, Wyo., that operated the tour. Father of teen...

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New veterans set record for war-disability claims

By MARILYNN MARCHIONE, AP Chief Medical Writer America's newest veterans are filing for disability benefits at a historic rate, claiming to be the most medically and mentally troubled generation of former troops the nation has ever seen. A staggering 45 percent of the 1.6 million veterans from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are now seeking compensation for injuries they say are service-related. That is more than double the estimate of 21 percent who filed such claims after some other relatively recent wars, top government officials told The Associated Press. What's more, these new veterans are claiming eight to nine ailments on average,...

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Whistleblower Woodford to tackle Olympus in court

May 27, 2012|Kirstin Ridley | Reuters LONDON (Reuters) - Michael Woodford, the ousted chief executive of Olympus, will try to persuade a London judge his embattled former employer fired him because he blew the cover off one of Japan's most high-profile corporate frauds. The five-day hearing, which starts on Monday, will throw the spotlight back onto a $1.7 billion accounting scandal that has cost the camera-to-endoscope maker its board and reputation. Whistleblower Woodford to tackle Olympus in court...

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State revoking license of Joliet nursing home

By Janet Lundquist and Bob Okon Staff writers May 2, 2012 5:08PM State public health officials confirmed Wednesday they are in the process of revoking the license for a troubled Joliet nursing home. Hillcrest Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, 777 Draper Ave., also was scheduled to be decertified for Medicare on April 1, said Melaney Arnold, communications manager for the Illinois Department of Public Health. Arnold could not confirm Wednesday that the center was scheduled to close May 15. A woman who answered the phone at Hillcrest on Wednesday said Amy Sparks, who is listed as the administrator of the facility on both the...

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Report: Sexual abuse of female farmworkers common

By Tracie Cone, Published: May 16 FRESNO, Calif. — Female farmworkers across the United States are commonly sexually harassed and assaulted, in part because their immigration status makes them fearful of calling police, according to a report being released Wednesday by Human Rights Watch. The survey by the international rights group mirrors two previous reports on the risks facing women and girls that had focused on California, where most of the nation’s farmworkers reside. “Our research confirms what farmworker advocates across the country believe: sexual violence and sexual harassment experienced by farmworkers is common enough that some farmworker women see these abuses as...

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Readers talk insurance, accidents during chat with personal injury lawyer

LAUREN BOYER York Daily Record, Pa. 1:10 p.m. CDT, May 9, 2012 YORK, Pa. Teens driving. Treading through icy parking lots. Super gluing. These, and other potentially hazardous activities, were discussed Friday in a ydr.com live chat featuring attorney Gregory Bair of Stock & Leader. Bair is a member of the York firm's litigation practice group. His concentrations include injury law; domestic law and other issues, such as auto and motorcycle accidents; wrongful death; product liability; animal injuries; and injuries resulting from falls. Readers logged on to ask Bair questions -- the good, the bad, and the downright amusing. Readers talk insurance, accidents during chat with...

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