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Featured Verdicts

New and noteworthy verdicts and settlements from around the country, selected by VerdictSearch editors.  Find out about the case most relevant to your practice, with complete details on awards and settlements; injuries claimed; experts, attorneys, insurers and judges involved; and more.

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Florida Verdicts

Find out about the most important recent Florida cases, selected by VerdictSearch editors. Coverage includes Miami-Dade, Palm Beach and Pinellas counties.

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Family of bipolar woman who died in jail garners $975,000

A jury awarded $975,000 to the family of a bipolar woman they claimed died in a jail due to negligent care. Jennifer DeGraw, 50, was reported by her husband to have discontinued taking her medication and to be a danger to herself and others. She was arrested and booked into jail on charges of battery on a law enforcement officer. Eight days later, she died of a cardiac arrest. The estate claimed her death was due to the jail staff's failure to administer thyroid and hypertension medication and assure adequate, basic nutritional needs. Defense counsel claimed DeGraw was monitored, that all jail policies and procedures were followed, and that she received proper medical monitoring. They claimed she died of an arrhythmia caused by her obesity.
DeGraw v. Coats
Federal

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Cop recovers $151,430 for knife attack at Wal-Mart store

A police officer who was hurt when a knife-wielding woman attacked him recovered $151,430. Carlos Acosta, then 48, was dispatched to a Wal-Mart store in Miami. He encountered Jamelia Rabsatt, who he claimed was violent, agitated and holding a knife. He tasered Rabsatt, who managed to lacerate his left hand and knee and bite his right shoulder. She was eventually subdued and arrested. Acosta claimed store managers failed to call police immediately to report her violent behavior. Defense counsel argued that despite being a trained officer, Acosta did not wait for backup. The jury found Wal-Mart 65 percent liable and Acosta 35 percent liable, reducing the $152,200 award accordingly (punitive damages of $150,000 were not subject to reduction).
Acosta v. Wal-Mart Stores Inc.
Miami-Dade County

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Docs not liable for woman’s claimed vision loss, jury finds

A jury found that three medical professionals were not liable for a woman's claimed vision impairment. Robin Helfan, then 49, went to ophthalmologist Guy Angella complaining of sudden peripheral vision loss. Neurologist Gail Ballweg performed a spinal tap, which Helfan claimed was misinterpreted. Helfan's neuro-ophthalmologist, Stephen Solomon, treated her with steroids. She claimed she was misdiagnosed and as a result suffered from elevated cerebral spinal fluid pressure in her brain. She claimed medications would have lowered the pressure. She claimed the steroids were the wrong treatment. She claimed she later became legally blind. The defense argued all the doctors acted appropriately and the right diagnosis and treatment were given.
Helfan v. Eye Surgery Associates Inc.
Broward County

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Largest Florida Jury Verdicts

(since Jan. 1, 2014; based on cases reported to VerdictSearch)
VERDICT CASE VENUE DATE
$21,700,000 Estate of Karoussos v. Port Lucaya Marina Co. Ltd. Broward Co. Feb. 10
$14,887,641 Estate of Blanchard v. Panhandle Plumbing Inc. Okaloosa Co. Mar. 25
$12,500,000 CE v. Myers Lake Co. Jan. 18
$12,500,000 Cuculino v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. Miami-Dade Co. Jan. 17
$12,000,000 Estate of Wheeler v. D.A.B. Constructors Inc. Citrus Co. Jan. 22
$10,096,545 Simms v. Kraft Broward Co. Jan. 24
$10,000,000 Estate of Kemp v. Buckman Broward Co. Jan. 17
$6,317,149 Cappelletti v. TEO Enterprises Inc. Palm Beach Co. Jan. 30
$5,350,000 Estate of Goveia v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. Orange Co. Feb. 17
$5,000,000 Estate of Bowden v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. Duval Co. Mar. 26
$5,000,000 Estate of Cheeley v, R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. Broward Co. Feb. 3