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Bar Owner Named the Defendant in Lawsuit Filed by Woman who was Hurt in a DUI Accident

Posted by on 7:52 pm in Personal Injury | 0 comments

Bar Owner Named the Defendant in Lawsuit Filed by Woman who was Hurt in a DUI Accident

Alina M. House has filed a personal injury lawsuit that names the driver of the car that struck her in a head on collision and Tongy’s Shmackhouse Bar as the defendants.

The lawsuit states that when 21-year-old Derik Frazier Sharkey arrived at the bar on Oct. 15, 20, he was already extremely intoxicated. This isn’t the bar’s fault. What is their fault, is that he was served large quantities of alcohol the entire time he remained at the bar.

500397Sharkey remained at Tongy’s until the establishment closed at 2 a.m. on Oct. 16. By this point, the lawsuit refers to Sharkey’s state as “grossly intoxicated.”

Unmindful of his inebriated state, Sharkey chose to get into his car and travel on U.S. 501 towards Myrtle Beach, to intoxicated to notice that for two miles, he was driving the wrong way on the six lane divided highway. It’s at this point that his car and House’s car were involved in a head on collision.

The lawsuit calls the injuries that House sustained in the accident “catastrophic physical injuries, including a traumatic brain injury and massive injuries to her lungs and body.” The medical bills she accumulated as a result add up to $204,000 which she hopes to recoup in a settlement. She’s also suing for pain and suffering as well as lost wages.

shutterstock_173305205_zpsfda94d4eHouse’s reason for naming Dustin Leek, the owner of Tongy’s Schmack House, in her personal injury lawsuit is because as the owner of a South Carolina Liquor license, he has a responsibility to ensure that his employees are mindful of how much their customers have had to drink and that they stop serving them if the employee feels the customer has reached the point of intoxication. In this case, that didn’t happen.

The lawsuit states that the employees who continued to serve Sharkey that night had to have noticed that he was well past the point of intoxicated and still they kept serving him. Even worse, they did nothing to prevent him from getting into his car and driving away.

After the accident, Horry County jail records show that Sharkey spent about six hours in jail before he was released. Tests indicated that at the time of the crash, his blood alcohol level was approximately 3 times the state’s legal limit. On February 24, he pled guilty to driving under the influence charges.

The lawsuit is seeking both actual and punitive damages from the defendants in this case.

Car accident“My heart goes out to this young woman whose life was forever changed by some seriously poor decision making,” said Joseph Sandefur, managing partner of a top personal injury firm with an office headquartered in Myrtle Beach. “She’s absolutely correct to name both the driver who struck her and the owner of the bar that served him in the lawsuit. Hopefully, by naming the bar, other similar establishments will realize the consequences of over serving patrons and take steps to make sure none of their customers are involved in a DUI.”

If a drunk driving accident resulted in you getting injured, you don’t have to deal with the financial ramifications alone. Visit to learn more about personal injury law and how you can seek a settlement for punitive and actual damages.

South Carolina Woman Films Her Attack on Facebook Live

Posted by on 9:28 am in lawsuit, Personal Injury | 0 comments

South Carolina Woman Films Her Attack on Facebook Live

Donesha S. Gantt isn’t the kind of woman who just sits back and hopes for the best, especially not when there’s a man running around Opa Loca who tried to kill her. Se turned to Facebook Live to film the way she reacted to the event with the hopes that it would pay off and help authorities track down the man who made her a victim. Before long, the video had gone viral with more than 92,000 views.

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During the video, Donesha can be clearly heard screaming while the two women in the care with her and Donesha were injured by their assailant. The audio captured Donesha’s stressed breathing and chilling words. “Mom got shot three times and if I die…Mom I’m bleeding. Mama I’m bleeding. I know they shot me but it’s good. It’s good… God forgive me for all my sins. God forgive me for everything.”

The next thing the viewer hears is the wail of the sirens announcing that help is fast approaching. “I said I’m bleeding. Tell them to help me. I need some help,” Donesha screams while she continues to sob. She also said that she can’t believe that no one from people who stand there was not willing to approach her and help her in a time of need.

A member of the responding crew can be heard murmuring to Donesha, urging her to stay strong, a to talk to him which will help her breath. Later, when Donesha was safely at the hospital, she posted a message to her Facebook account. “BLESSED. All I can say is blessed. 4 wounds and I’m blessed. Love you Ma.”

Woman_posts_live_F_2671813nA month after Donesha’s video went viral, police have finally made the very first arrest that pertains to this particular case. They arrested Roscoe Burton, age 20.

According to the detectives who tracked Burton down, the young man now finds himself facing three different counts of pre-meditated attempted murder. He’s being held without bond while police continue their investigation.

“Something tells me this won’t be the last time we hear about a victim using Facebook or another networking social media website to help the public either know about a crime in progress or to help solve a crime,” personal injury lawyer, Joe and Martin of South Carolina said when he learned about Donesha’s use of Facebook live as she came under fire. “I can’t help wondering if, considering how much people are glued to their cell phones and tablets, if this might not actually turn out to be an even faster way of alerting the authorities of a crime in progress than dialing 911 will be.”

If you are ever caught in a shootout as Donesha and her mother were. The first thing you need to do is take care of all your medical needs. Than you need to do everything in your power to help the authorities track down the person who committed the crime. Once that has been taken care of, you need to contact a well-respected, successful personal injury attorney and take the preliminary steps in filing a lawsuit against your attackers.

Legal Aid Paves the Way to a Better Life for a Girl Injured at Birth

Posted by on 9:53 am in Blog | 0 comments

Legal Aid Paves the Way to a Better Life for a Girl Injured at Birth

Life hasn’t been easy for Maziah Mills-Sorrells, age 4. Shortly after she was born, her parents realized something wasn’t quite right. Her family soon learned that her left arm was completely paralyzed due to an injury sustained at the time of her birth.

Although they work hard and would do anything to help Maziah, her parents aren’t wealthy. They’re struggling to make ends meet while working at fast food restaurants. They barely have enough to keep themselves in a home, fed, and clothed. There isn’t enough left over to help Maziah learn to cope without use of her left arm. The Sorrells work hard, but even so their combined income rarely exceeds $12,000 a year.

With financial concerns looming and Maziah’s condition becoming problematic as she grows, the Sorrells filed a birth injury lawsuit against the hospital and medical team that assisted with the delivery. While the odds of them winning the California birth injury case are good, at the moment, litigation is slow and a settlement hasn’t been agreed upon.

Understanding that the wheels of justice sometimes turn slowly, the Sorrels turned to the Social Security Administration for assistance. They turned in an application asking for child disability benefits. So far they’ve submitted the application three times, and all three times the application has been met with denial.

A local California paper heard about the story and wrote an article about Maziah and the struggles her family deal with every single day. The article highlighted how a simple thing like maintaining her balance, washing her hair, and even getting dressed can be a monumental challenge to Maziah and how she requires more care than the average 4 years old.

The article generated a storm of helpful suggestions, including the advice that the Sorrells speak to California’s Community Legal Services, which consists of a group of lawyers who help the poor with a wide variety of financial services. The Legal Services team admired how tenacious the Sorrels have been and how devoted they are to providing Maziah with the best possible life and helping her learn to live with the challenges presented by her birth injury.

With the help of the Community Legal Services, another child disability application was filled out and sent to the Social Security Administration. This time the organization not only noticed the application, but also approved it. The approval means that the Maziah will get a monthly check that’s meant to help with her medical care.

U.S. District Judge Juan Sanchez provided further relief to the young, struggling family when they reversed the denial the original application received, forcing the SSA to make retroactive payments that date back all the way to 2011. The retroactive payments came to $17,000, significantly more money than the Sorrels had ever seen before.

At this point, the retroactive pay has not yet made its way to the Sorrel’s home, though no one fully understands what has caused the delay. While they wait, the Sorrels are putting the monthly $657 check they are receiving to good use.

But while the monthly SSI check of $657 is coming in to the family, the retroactive cash payments are delayed. A spokesman for the Social Security Administration would not comment on any aspect of Maziah’s case.

“Stories like these, about auto accident lawyer really helping people, remind me of exactly why I became a lawyer,” California attorney Jeffrey Killino explained. “I help individuals who have suffered a personal injury, a head trauma, or a birth injury and do everything I can to make sure they get the legal settlement they deserve.”


Invokana Lawsuits Gain Momentum

Posted by on 8:37 am in Blog, Critical Laws | 0 comments

Invokana Lawsuits Gain Momentum

When it was first released to the public in 2013, Invokana was warmly received. Individuals with Type 2 diabetes were delighted to have what looked like a safe medication they could use as a sodium-glucose co-transporter 2. It didn’t take long before concerns about the drug’s possible side effects started to be heard. In December, approximately 2 years after Invokana was made public, The FDA stated that there had been 73 reports filed against the drug and that the organization was investigating 20 complaints about the drug triggering diabetic ketoacidosis. The announcement prompted stronger warnings to be placed on bottles of Invokana.

Diabetic ketoacidosis is a serious health condition that develops when the cells are unable to process glucose and as a result, the blood becomes to acidic. Symptoms include extreme fatigue, respiratory distress, nausea, abdominal pain, and more. Many patients who have developed ketoacidosis have fallen into comas and in some cases, the condition has become terminal.

Since the FDA announced that there was a chance Invokana could trigger potentially fatal diabetic ketoacidosis, courts all over the country have been inundated with Invokana lawsuits. One such lawsuit was filed by a woman in Texas who feels that Johnson & Johnson and its Janssen subsidiary owes her $10 million after she not only developed diabetic ketoacidosis, but also kidney damage when she took the prescription drug.

Her Invokana lawsuit has been filed with the U.S. District Court, District of New Jersey, in it she explains how she took Invokana for approximately one month. After using the medication for that single month she was informed of both the kidney damage and the diabetic ketoacidosis, a diagnosis that prompted her to discontinue her use of Invokana. She goes on to explain how she read all the material she’d been given, which had been provided by Johnson & Johnson and Janssen prior to taking Invokana and determined it was safe for her to use. Had she fully understood the potential side effects, she wouldn’t have tried the medication.

In March, 2016, a New Jersey federal court reported that two new Invokana lawsuits had been filed. In both of the cases, plaintiffs complain of kidney damage that they feel wouldn’t have happened if they hadn’t taken Invokana.

An Invokana lawsuit file in South Carolina was filed on behalf of a man died after he suffered both kidney damage and stroke which his loved ones’ feel were brought on by Invokana, a drug he only used for about two months before his health fatally deteriorated.

Sandy A. Liebhard, a Bernstein Liebhard LLP partner, feels these cases are just the tip of the ice burg.  “Our Firm continues to hear from people who claim to have suffered serious complications, including ketoacidosis and kidney damage, allegedly related to their use of Invokana and similar Type 2 diabetes drugs. It is not surprising that the litigation involving this medication is growing,”

For more drug information about Invokana, check out Rx Injury Help where you’ll not only learn about the potential dangers of Invokana, but also current and past lawsuits.

If you’ve taken Invokana and feel it’s taken a drastic toll on your health, you may be entitled to financial compensation. The best way to find out is by arranging a consultation with an experienced attorney.




Beyond Car Accidents: Defining Personal Injury

Posted by on 1:27 pm in Personal Injury | 0 comments

Beyond Car Accidents: Defining Personal Injury

When we think about Personal Injury cases, car accidents are one of the first things to come to mind. Car accidents make up a large percent of all Personal Injury cases, however there are other cases that fall under the Personal Injury umbrella that all consumers should be aware of. Here are three more incidents that constitute Personal Injury in Ocala.

Product Liability

Let’s say you buy a car and the brakes don’t work properly, but you don’t find out until they give out on the highway. Who’s at fault? Unfortunately, Toyota knows the answer to this question. Product manufacturers that negligently introduce harmful or defective products to the marketplace can be held liable for the consequences of their actions. Volkswagen is currently being put through the ringer for manipulating emissions tests in their diesel vehicles and unfortunately, this won’t be the last manufacturer held to account for their negligent practices. In the past few years alone, baby products like cribs and pantry staples such as peanut butter have been recalled because of injuries. The salmonella outbreak due to bad peanut butter has even lead to jail time for those who should’ve known about it. Many of these cases are tried both in criminal and civil court as the government seeks to punish the guilty and the harmed seek recompense through the tort system.

Medical Malpractice

malpracticeEveryone has heard this surgery horror story: a patient goes in for a routine surgery and comes out sick, or worse, dead. The cause? The inattentive surgeon left a scalpel, a sponge, or some other instrument inside the patient. It’s a pretty common example of medical negligence. Dental malpractice also falls under the medical malpractice umbrella, as do plastic surgery mishaps. In a medical malpractice case, a judge or jury is tasked with the responsibility of determining whether the doctor or dentist was at fault for the injuries of the plaintiff, whether it be an unsightly scar or an unnecessary procedure.

Industrial Disease

If you’ve ever watched the movie Erin Brockovich, you have some idea about industrial disease cases. Wikipedia identifies industrial disease cases as Personal Injury claims that stem from environmental or occupational factors. In Erin Brockovich, the water was tainted by a plant making the citizens who depended on it sick. Recent events that have lead to large-scale industrial disease include 9/11 and the Fukushima nuclear reactor meltdown. The 9/11 first-responders were part of a Personal Injury lawsuit that blamed lack of proper ventilation equipment, among other things, as a cause for breathing problems and other illnesses linked to the explosion. They won damages against New York City to aid with their medical bills.

Personal Injury claims include work-related accidents, slip and falls, and assaults, as well. Generally, the basis for these claims is a harmed plaintiff that is seeking monetary compensation for damages they believe the defendant caused willfully or through negligence. A Personal Injury claim in Ocala might deal with an inattentive driver (whether in a car or boat) or even a worker’s comp claim against an employer. Personal Injury law covers a large spectrum of cases. To understand more about whether your injuries fall under Florida law, we recommend you speak with a Personal Injury lawyer in Ocala. Speaking with a lawyer is an important part of understanding your rights and should be done in a timely fashion so that any lawsuits are filed before the statute of limitations takes effect.

You Can’t Always Say What You Want: Understanding Defamation and Bill Cosby

Posted by on 11:14 am in Law and Justice | 0 comments

Not all personal injury law concerns itself with physical harm to a plaintiff. Some, such as that covered by defamation law, deals with a person’s reputation. Libel and slander, the two types of defamation, can damage a person’s reputation and lead to loss of income as well as emotional pain and suffering. A New York personal injury lawyer can help you determine what kind of speech or publication is injurious to your reputation and whether your case can be fought in civil court.

While the first amendment is touted as protecting free speech, it doesn’t protect false, injurious speech. Slander is defined as negative or false speech that damages the reputation of a person, product, or company. There are currently four different types of recognized slanderous speech: 1) alleging that someone committed a crime; (2) saying someone is sick with a “foul or loathsome” illness; (3) stating that someone is not able to practice their trade or business for negative reasons; and (4) alleging they have done inappropriate or illegal sexual acts. Proving slander can be difficult. A plaintiff must show that the defendant willfully or negligently spread false information to another person and that communication lead to specific damages.

Libel, slander’s cousin, also falls under defamation law, however it is tried differently because, whereas a plaintiff in a slander case must show the slander occurred, libel is assumed to have occurred. This is because libel is published, whether it be in the form of an op-ed piece, a picture, or a comic. It is still necessary to show that the injurious piece was published maliciously or negligently and that it has caused harm to an individual or company.

Currently a high profile defamation case is being tried in the headlines. While actor and comedian Bill Cosby was charged with criminal sexual assault in Pennsylvania in December 2015, a defamation case against him by seven other alleged victims continues forward in Massachusetts. Attorneys in that case are hoping to depose Camille Cosby, Mr. Cosby’s wife, in his stead; however, she is fighting tooth and nail to avoid appearing.

Cosby isn’t just being sued for allegedly defaming the characters of seven women, he’s also suing them for sullying his reputation. Throw Janice Dickinson in the mix and Cosby’s legal woes multiply. In addition to the two Massachusetts defamation cases and the Pennsylvania criminal case, Cosby is also being sued for defamation in California by model Janice Dickinson, another of Bill Cosby’s alleged victims.

So why all the hullabaloo? Over the past couple of years, around fifty women have come forward to claim that Bill Cosby drugged, sexually assaulted, or raped them. In his zeal to condemn his attackers, it seems he may have said some things he shouldn’t have. Because the statute of limitations for sexual assault or rape had elapsed in most of the cases and the difficulty in obtaining evidence in decades-old attacks, Cosby was not charged in most of the alleged incidents. His words, however, left him open to a defamation suit. As with many victims who feel slighted by the criminal justice system, Cosby’s alleged victims are attempting to find justice and closure through personal injury law.

A New York personal injury lawyer can help you determine whether your case is suited for a civil court so you, too, can achieve the closure you need to move in. Keep in mind, however, that there are varying statute of limitations for different complaints. If you feel someone has defamed you, it is important to see a New York personal injury attorney as soon as possible. They’ll be able to help you determine whether you have enough evidence to move forward and help you attain the justice you deserve.