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Pain and Suffering

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Local Rebel
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since 12-21-1999
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25 posted 03-01-2003 06:54 PM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

Well there may be a reason why you can't post the follow up to those famous Stella Award cases Deer.  They're pure FICTION:http://www.truthorfiction.com/rumors/onlyinamerica.htm  
and http://www.snopes.com/legal/lawsuits.asp

Of course the McDonalds case is true -- here are the McFacts though:

McFact No. 1:  For years, McDonald's had known they had a problem with the way they make their coffee - that their coffee was served much hotter (at least 20 degrees more so) than at other restaurants.

McFact No. 2:  McDonald's knew its coffee sometimes caused serious injuries - more than 700 incidents of scalding coffee burns in the past decade have been settled by the Corporation - and yet they never so much as consulted a burn expert regarding the issue.

McFact No. 3:  The woman involved in this infamous case suffered very serious injuries - third degree burns on her groin, thighs and buttocks that required skin grafts and a seven-day hospital stay.

McFact No. 4:  The woman, an 81-year old former department store clerk who had never before filed suit against anyone, said she wouldn't have brought the lawsuit against McDonald's had the Corporation not dismissed her request for compensation for medical bills.

McFact No. 5:  A McDonald's quality assurance manager testified in the case that the Corporation was aware of the risk of serving dangerously hot coffee and had no plans to either turn down the heat or to post warning about the possibility of severe burns, even though most customers wouldn't think it was possible.

McFact No. 6:  After careful deliberation, the jury found McDonald's was liable because the facts were overwhelmingly against the company. When it came to the punitive damages, the jury found that McDonald's had engaged in willful, reckless, malicious, or wanton conduct, and rendered a punitive damage award of 2.7 million dollars. (The equivalent of just two days of coffee sales, McDonalds Corporation generates revenues in excess of 1.3 million dollars daily from the sale of its coffee, selling 1 billion cups each year.)

McFact No. 7:  On appeal, a judge lowered the award to $480,000, a fact not widely publicized in the media.

McFact No. 8:  A report in Liability Week, September 29, 1997, indicated that Kathleen Gilliam, 73, suffered first degree burns when a cup of coffee spilled onto her lap. Reports also indicate that McDonald's consistently keeps its coffee at 185 degrees, still approximately 20 degrees hotter than at other restaurants. Third degree burns occur at this temperature in just two to seven seconds, requiring skin grafting, debridement and whirlpool treatments that cost tens of thousands of dollars and result in permanent disfigurement, extreme pain and disability to the victims for many months, and in some cases, years.


An excerpt from  http://www.vanfirm.com/mcdonalds-coffee-lawsuit.htm

quote:


As the trial date approached, McDonald's declined to settle. At one point, Mr. Morgan (plaintiff's attorney) says he offered to drop the case for $300,000, and was willing to accept half that amount.

But McDonald's didn't bite.


Only days before the trial, Judge Scott ordered both sides to attend a mediation session. The mediator, a retired judge, recommended that McDonald's settle for $225,000, saying a jury would be likely to award that amount. The company didn't follow his recommendation.


Instead, McDonald's continued denying any liability for Mrs. Liebeck's burns. The company suggested that she may have contributed to her injuries by holding the cup between her legs and not removing her clothing immediately. And it also argued that "Mrs. Liebeck's age may have caused her injuries to have been worse than they might have been in a younger individual," since older skin is thinner and more vulnerable to injury.


The trial lasted seven sometimes mind-numbing days. Experts dueled over the temperature at which coffee causes burns. A scientist testifying for McDonald's argued that any coffee hotter than 130 degrees could produce third-degree burns, so it didn't matter whether Mc Donald's coffee was hotter. But a doctor testifying on behalf of Mrs. Liebeck argued that lowering the serving temperature to about 160 degrees could make a big difference, because it takes less than three seconds to produce a third-degree burn at 190 degrees, about 12 to 15 seconds at 180 degrees and about 20 seconds at 160 degrees.


The testimony of Mr. Appleton, the McDonald's executive, didn't help the company, jurors said later. He testified that McDonald's knew its coffee sometimes caused serious burns, but hadn't consulted burn experts about it. He also testified that McDonald's had decided not to warn customers about the possibility of severe burns, even though most people wouldn't think it possible. Finally, he testified that McDonald's didn't intend to change any of its coffee policies or procedures, saying, "There are more serious dangers in restaurants."


Mr. Elliott, the juror, says he began to realize that the case was about "callous disregard for the safety of the people."
Next for the defense came P. Robert Knaff, a human-factors engineer who earned $15,000 in fees from the case and who, several jurors said later, didn't help McDonald's either. Dr. Knaff told the jury that hot-coffee burns were statistically insignificant when compared to the billion cups of coffee McDonald's sells annually.


To jurors, Dr. Knaff seemed to be saying that the graphic photos they had seen of Mrs. Liebeck's burns didn't matter because they were rare. "There was a person behind every number and I don't think the corporation was attaching enough importance to that," says juror Betty Farnham.
When the panel reached the jury room, it swiftly arrived at the conclusion that McDonald's was liable. "The facts were so overwhelmingly against the company," says Ms. Farnham. "They were not taking care of their consumers."
Then the six men and six women decided on compensatory damages of $200,000, which they reduced to $160,000 after determining that 20% of the fault belonged with Mrs. Liebeck for spilling the coffee.


The jury then found that McDonald's had engaged in willful, reckless, malicious or wanton conduct, the basis for punitive damages. Mr. Morgan had suggested penalizing McDonald's the equivalent of one to two days of companywide coffee sales, which he estimated at $1.35 million a day. During the four-hour deliberation, a few jurors unsuccessfully argued for as much as $9.6 million in punitive damages. But in the end, the jury settled on $2.7 million.




More to come on juries et al.

[This message has been edited by Local Rebel (03-01-2003 07:00 PM).]

Balladeer
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26 posted 03-01-2003 08:28 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

Aw, Rebel, that's beneath you You can't take a decision by a group that had already written themselves into the annals of jurisprudence for stupidity and display them as an example to disprove my point - one out of the thousands that exist out there.  Really....

Hush, I certainly agree with your last point. I would see many other things taught in high school to prepare juveniles for adult life. Maybe some of them exist now but back in my time it would have been of great benefit to me to have classes on laws, the stock market, money management, marriage and relationships. I knew very little about any of those things and did not have parents to teach them. I could split an infinity and dissect a frog with the best of them but the things I found that I really needed to know were not in the cirriculum. I am in complete agreement with you
Balladeer
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27 posted 03-01-2003 09:08 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

Rebel, you obviously have much more time to dedicate to this than I do. I comment your drive and thoroughness.
Local Rebel
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28 posted 03-01-2003 09:26 PM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

quote:

You can't take a decision by a group that had already written themselves into the annals of jurisprudence for stupidity and display them as an example to disprove my point


Says who?  I want a jury trial to see who won that parry!  


quote:

Rebel, you obviously have much more time to dedicate to this than I do. I comment your drive and thoroughness



If only!  I'm logging between 70 and 80 hours a week right now.  But when it comes to fundamental liberty, democracy, and human rights -- you bet I got drive! Thanks.  

I only had time to do a search on those cases just this evening -- not back last month when you posted them.. heh... but I can understand why anyone might think they're real.  The fact that probably most of us would think they could be speaks volumes.


Hush -- Juries will have to wait until tomorrow -- until then -- just rest assured that you're spot on when it comes to linking trial by jury to democracy.... remember -- it was one of the fundamental charges leveled against George (um King not Pres) that he was denying the colonists the right to trial by jury in the Declaration of Independence.


[This message has been edited by Local Rebel (03-01-2003 09:27 PM).]

Brad
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29 posted 03-02-2003 02:23 AM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

I don't know, I think Michael's point is at least worth discussing. Other countries have tribunals (though, they have absurd rulings as well.). Is the jury an anachronism? Most people I know (not that I know many people anymore) saw jury duty as something to be avoided, it was a point of pride for some to get out of it. If this is widespread, then it might be argued that we can't have a jury of one's peers in any true sense of the word.

Perhaps, the privilege of jury duty should be scrapped, not because it gets us closer to the truth or anything like that, but because people no longer think it worthwhile to participate in any of the three branches of government. Perhaps they are content to give up on all three -- perhaps the move from democracy to meritocracy is something people actually want.

I'm still for democracy but I think it is a point worth discussing -- is America shifting to the professionalization of all factors of public life?
Local Rebel
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30 posted 03-02-2003 01:51 PM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

And discuss we shall Brad, discuss we shall.

Deer said:
quote:

There are, of course, valid lawsuits, which are the ones LR is referring to concerning the setting of limits. What about those limits? There are two payments - actual and punitive. The actual are microscopic in comparison to the punitive and the punitive damages have indeed gone berzerk. What are the punitive damages? They are not for the pain and suffering the victim endured...that's covered under the actual. The punitive damages are meant to "punish" the offenders - teach them a lesson. Have you ever heard of this "punishment" doing any good? Why should this amount go to the victim and lawyer? You punish a tobacco firm by giving a billion to the attorneys who try the case? Sweet deal for them, isn't it? They can stand in front of the jury in their best Hollywoodian pose, scream at the jury to punish that evil company that would do such a horrible thing entreat them to "sock it to them" in a way that will really teach them a lesson and them smile as 30-40% of it finds its way into their pockets. No wonder we have a glut of lawyers in this country.



This is the kind of cynicism that is rampant across the country when it comes to the American (in)Justice system.  Let's just take one idea from here and explore it -- but first -- let's clarify actual vs. punitive damages -- pain and suffering is not quantified in actual damages -- actual damages are limited to lost wages, medical bills, property damaged, future care.  Pain and suffering and punitive damages are considered to be non-economic because they are not so easily quantifiable.  But Deer asks a good question " Why should this amount go to the victim and lawyer?", or better, why compensate non-economic damages with money?  Money isn't going to bring a severed limb back, a dead person back, a lost lover back, a child's sight -- why money?  

The Willie Nelson of law, Gerry Spence, said it best when he said (paraphrased), "What is a corporation?  Does it have flesh and blood?  Does it have eyes?  Does it have a beating heart?  NO!  A Corporation is money.  That's all that it is.  A bunch of money.  You can only punish it by taking away its money."

Americans have been loving to hate corporations since the very inception of the colonies.  The East India Company chartered by the Crown in 1600, dominated the American Continent with an iron fist.  It had it's own army, and waged it's own private little wars.  It was a direct affront to the Magna Carta in it's operation throughout the globe denying British subjects abroad the rights enjoyed by the citizens back in Jolly old.  It did this because it removed the King from the parliamentary process and gave him direct control by fiat.  It wasn't alone.  The Hudson Bay company was busy harassing the Native American population to protect the Colonists while the East India Company terrorized them.

The soldiers were brutal.  They were virtually lawless.  The judges, puppets of the crown, protected them from prosecution. Without juries, ostensibly a stipulation of the Magna Carta and the best practice back in the mother country, this went on for a century before the Declaration of Independence was written.

It was this kind of oppression that forged the thought processes of the founding fathers.  Though they recognized the corporate formation as a tool of capitalism they also knew firsthand of its utility in enslaving the people to a government -- they much favored the simple rights of man.

Even though a jury trial isn't specific to the Constitution, the Bill of Rights makes it darn hard for the courts to operate without it.  The Big Corporate America knows what a threat to their existence the jury has been from the very beginning.  That's why they've always been at odds with the jury system.  That's why they're trying to get rid of it now.  

One of the amusing parts to all of this is, as an Entreprenuer, I used to get bombarded by information from BIG groups like the NFIB (emphasis on the FIB) that tried to convince me that my destiny as a small business man was linked to the success of major corporations -- that the laws that favored big business favored business.  

I wasn't duped.

This is kind of like trying to convince an antelope who's in the same zoo as the Bengal Tiger, that their common enemy is the Zoo-keeper and the bars.

Ironically now -- there is some appearance that they may finally be right.  After all -- who can withstand a large judgement better?  A big company?  Or a small one?  The current tort climate is just masked to look that way.

Hush said:
quote:

So, you are quite obviously in favor of representative democracy over direct democracy? Sorry, but I don't buy that 'the common people are too stupid' argument. Because, you know, it's not like the judges are going to be bought out, and it's not like poor and uneducated people are going to be screwed even worse in the judicial system, and well-paid judges are obviously going to relate to the problems of a poor defendant. Puh-lease. While I agree that the current system isn't all silver lining, taking power completely out of the hands of common citizens will only make things worse. You know, kind of like the Electoral college... but that's a whole different can of worms.



This isn't a cynical statement (Electoral College reference aside).  In a simple paragraph, while thinking she's not been given the proper tools in high school to do so, she's managed to hit on the major theme that's outlined our Republic from the very beginning, namely, -- is it a safe bet to put the government in the hands of the people?  If so -- how do we prevent the Representative Republic from becoming just another form of Tyranny?  Why is it better to trade one tyrant 3000 miles away for 3000 tyrants one mile away?

Alex de Tocqueville in the early 19th century observed, "Thus the jury, which is the most energetic means of making the people rule, is also the most efficacious means of teaching it how to rule well."

True -- there are plenty of countries that have no Jury system at all.  Iraq, North Korea, The former Soviet Union -- the list goes on.  Tribunals are also used by the American Military.  Why?  Because in the Military you can't have a jury of peers (ie Privates) telling Generals what to do.

The Jury system is the only direct vestige of citizen involvement in the government. This is why Brad is absolutely right when he says lawsuits are just Americans being Americans.  Do we really want to give that over to Lawyers and Judges (who used to be lawyers)?

People are quick to point out the failings of the system like the O.J. Simpson trial, or huge jury awards in civil cases -- but -- there is no other way to punish a corporation.  If it is negligent -- by what other means is there than to pinch it until it hurts?

What people aren't so quick to remember though is that for Andrea Yates, for Timothy McVeigh,  for John Walker Lindh -- the system worked just fine.

Thank you

Tell me why I'm wrong

[This message has been edited by Local Rebel (03-02-2003 03:19 PM).]

Local Rebel
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31 posted 03-02-2003 02:04 PM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

Ron said:

quote:
I know I'll never be able to prove my contention, but I strongly believe that if the same laws and legal philosophies were set in place in ANY other culture, the long-term results would be identical.


I know that you can't prove it Ron because it's wrong.... because you can't put the same laws and philosophies in another culture.  It would have to have the same evolution as this culture -- which wouldn't make it another culture.  

In the eastern mind, for instance, there was never a notion of individuality or "rights" endowed by a creator.  Plopping our ideas down there and expecting it to work the same just wouldn't work.

Am I wrong Brad?

I think there are two characteristics that distinguish the American -- and this might be a good topic for Philosophy -- one was captured well in a Soprano's episode (and yes -- I'll allow fiction -- sometime's it tells us more truth than facts do) when Tony's Russian girlfriend told him that Americans expect to be Happy -- nobody else on the planet expects that.

I think the reason Americans expect to be happy goes back to the conversation way back when we got into Bloom -- Americans, for the most part, believe that God loves them.  That's an extremely empowering notion.

So -- maybe your statement Ron -- that we need to change expectations and attitudes is closer to the mark.


[This message has been edited by Local Rebel (03-02-2003 02:12 PM).]

Balladeer
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32 posted 03-02-2003 08:07 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

AH, Rebel, even when I disagree with you I want to agree simply based on your eloquency and presentation

I do not deny that the only way to punish corporations in in the wallet. I do not agree, however, that the victim and lawyer be entitled to that punishment payoff. I would rather see it go to charities or institutions or something more deserving....will never happen but I'd prefer seeing that. Yes, I confess I have a problem with lawyers and their fees. I doubt that any profession rapes the common man more than they....and it is sad that people throw up their hands and accept it rather than complaining. In your earlier entry with the letter from Kathy Olsen, she complains bitterly about the salary cap and yet simply states that, out of a 1.9 million dollar decision, the lawyer and legal fees were just shy of one million...she simply states it as fact with no complaint, as if that's life.

    I confess I have a complaint with the majority of the entire court system. It has gotten away from justice. As Al Pacino so correctly stated in "....And Justice For All", 'they (the prosecution) wants to win and we want to win. Trials are not about justice...they are to see who can win.' In our misguided effort to be fair to everyone, the search for truth and the punishment of the guilty has taken a back seat. Take laws like Miranda, for example. I agree that people need to understand their rights but, should Miranda be abused or not used correctly, should the perpetrator walk? If a suspect wasn't read his rights, does that mean the crime didn't happen? The murdered victim didn't really die?...tell that to the survivors. Should there be punishment for not following Miranda? Yes..punish the officer or department that abused it. SUspend them, fire them or do whatever it takes but don't erase the crime because of it.

   It appears to me defense attorneys are bound by law to defend their clients, no matter what, according to the law. Even if they know the man is guilty they must do what they can to have him declared innocent, by the obligation of the law. I must confess that one of my "must watch" TV programs is "The Practice". Yes, I know it is a tv show but they have a long list of legal experts involved in the scripts and I believe they state the framework of the lawyer's responsibilities and actions accurately, along with the legal decisions rendered by the judges. That is one reason why it has won so many awards. There are times I scream at the screen, I get so incensed. Shouldn't trials have a primary responsibility to convict the guilty? Then why are there so many laws protecting the criminal? Why should lawyers fight so hard to keep incriminating evidence away from the juries if such evidence will show their clients to be guilty? Isn't finding the guilty party the object? Unfortunately, no. Yes, I agree that the police cannot be given unlimited powers and I believe in individual rights but some of the roadblocks that are put up go way too far. Having been in law enforcement for eleven years, I could give you more examples than you could believe. Police and even lawyers have to follow guidelines that everyone with half a brain know are illogical and unreasonable, yet they are protected because the judiciary cannot have individuals deciding what rules to follow and which ones to ignore so they protect the bad laws along with the good. "It's the law" is their final argument, as if by saying that, no other explanation is necessary. The laws have gotten so complex actual justice has suffered greatly. The stock answer to remarks like mine is "Well, it's the best system going" or something like that. Is it? There are many criminals who laugh at the justice system and they have reason to.  They know before they commit the crime how many years they would get for it and how many actual years they would serve. They know the legal loopholes as well as the lawyers. If our legal system is such a deterrent why are the jails overloaded to the point that criminals are given early release to make room for others? Why do many have rap sheets longer than a roll of Bounty in Rosie's hands? We have gone so far out of our way to show fairness that the criminals are the ones who really benefit...and laugh at the system while doing it.

I'll stop now. This has basically turned into a rant, I know. I'm saying nothing productive or even new, nor much that could be considered academically stimulating. Let's just all throw up our hands at the same time and say "That's the way it is" and forget about it.

Oh, and as far as the countries using the panel system, it is a little different when referring to civil cases. The United States and parts of Canada are the only countries in the world that use juries in civil cases.

Oh, and with regards to your other point, Rebel, what;s the difference between Andrea Yates, Mc Veigh, John Walker Lindh.....and OJ? I think that answer is fairly obvious.
Brad
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33 posted 03-02-2003 10:31 PM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

I liked the rant. I hated this part:

quote:
I'll stop now. This has basically turned into a rant, I know. I'm saying nothing productive or even new, nor much that could be considered academically stimulating. Let's just all throw up our hands at the same time and say "That's the way it is" and forget about it.


I think this is one of those attitudes that has to change.

Here is a page for international incarceration rates. America is number one followed by South Africa:
http://search.yahoo.com/search?fr=slv1&p=national+incarceration+rates

If this is accurate, or even close to being accurate, it seems clear that we need some type of judicial reform. But here's the problem. If Michael's personal experience is true and widespread and I see no reason to question it, the problem is cultural, not judicial.

Hush's point and Michael's point point to Local Rebel's point. Americans expect to be happy (I would have said equal, but happy is probably the better word), but know they're not (the reference to OJ), this creates the conditions we see -- at least in part.

I'm going to have to work this out a lot more, going in about five different directions right now, so I can't quite answer your question Local Rebel except to say that no, if you plopped the system in Japan tomorrow, the Japanese would not react to it the same way Americans do.

Koreans, on the other hand, . . .

A couple of quick points, Americans probably talk more than any other culture and yet say so little when it comes to something important, something serious.  

Could it be that we confuse serious conversation with the conversion tactics of a religious zealot and don't want to be seen as that type of person? I'm reading Menand's "Metaphysical Club" right now and it's striking to see how similar the tactics used today in politics are pretty much the same as a hundred and fifty years ago.  

Or to put it another way, it just drives me nuts when someone invokes the first ammendment to defend the use of profanity.

Sorry for rambling.  
nakdthoughts
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34 posted 03-03-2003 07:51 AM       View Profile for nakdthoughts   Email nakdthoughts   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for nakdthoughts

I got sued around 20 years ago. Strange situation.  A neighbor I barely knew invited me to a tupperware party and convinced me to have one later, so she could get points towards their gifts.

During the return party I had, I made sure everyone knew I had a large dog, an Afghan. Almost the whole town knew I had her, as she was a beautiful and unusual dog, well groomed and we walked her. She was chained to the back porch and could only  go out about 10 ft to do her "business".

We had just painted the front porch and had a rope preventing anyone from coming on it. My neighbor from a few blocks away came to pay me the money she owed me for the items that were to be delivered the next day.

I had called her to remind her. She didn't return the call but came anyway later the next day and  couldn't come to the front porch, saw paint cans sitting on the side porch and  decided  it must be wet, too and then came to my back door while her husband sat in front in the car.

At my back door, you couldn't miss such a large dog, but she must have been blind, walking towards Ginger until she  got frightened when the dog  stood up and began growling.( I only heard from inside...She must have taken a swipe at her because when I went out to check why the dog was whimpering I saw the woman on the ground, and called the ambulance and got her husband.)
She had a slight tear of skin on the top of her hand, which they called a bite.

She went to the hospital and the first call I received was from her husband asking for my home owners policy and telling me he was calling a lawyer. They led me to believe she was dying...always saying to any question "it don't look good".

I, being very sensitive, almost had a nervous breakdown over the whole situation, feeling guilty over something beyond my control... which dragged out over a year. She had a broken rib that splintered later, into her spleen. But she was sent home a few days later, being told she just had bruised ribs, but shouldn't have been walking around. I visited and brought her meals once she was home.

I was picked on by her daughter when I was  substituting at the high school..I was told by others that the husband was upset that I never visited her while she was in the hospital(my lawyer for the insurance company told me not to speak to them while they were sueing- no contact- he said) I was made to feel guilty because she didn't see the dog and what made it worse was it was Memorial Day weekend and I had redwood furniture out on the lawn, and as she backed away from the dog she fell over  a chair. They made it seem like I was at fault because I had lawn furniture on my lawn. And they played up the fact it was in the way as she backed away from the dog..but I  said  that it wasn't anywhere near her..I don't place lawn furniture near "dog crap"

They sued for a million plus and wanted a jury trial. The lawyers for the insurance company hardly ever kept in touch and the papers they would send with mistakes were always whited out and some times not even signed. I had anxiety attacks once it hit the local paper and the sheriff came to the door serving the lawsuit.

If I ran into her in town at the bank and I asked how she was doing, she would berate me in front of others and say she was fine until this happened. Her husband stopped by making overtures to me and telling me how they were claiming that they couldn't have sexual relations.

I couldn't leave the house due to the mental anguish her family was causing me.

I put a fence up immediately around the dog. I was told in PA that pools and dogs are considered nuisances and if they were the cause of any accident, the victim would win automatically even if they climbed my fence or if I had signs posted. My dog was declared "vicious" and I had to prove she had her shots and I had to wait to see if they were going to force me to put her  to sleep for the  bite on her hand.

I was in such a state that I was  having anxiety attacks because I didn't want to lose my home over something I had no control over. I was told to get myself another lawyer to cover the part of the lawsuit that the insurance couldn't cover.
They were asking for $45,000..and my insurance company was dickering with them at $10,000 intervals. I was insured up to $100,000.

I ran into someone who worked for insurance companies as a lawyer and he told me to write 3 copies:  one to the victims lawyer, one to mine and one to the insurance company telling them that I insist they pay her the 45,000 which my insurance affords and if it goes over that amount in a jury trial(the woman had a 3rd grade education and was pale and frail looking when healthy)and they won, which they would in PA..that  the insurance company will be sued and held accountable for any amount over the asking amount...because they could have settled it for less.

When I went for depositions, they asked me nothing  and I stood up and yelled at them for making me take off work to come and listen to a bunch of lies( the woman was now wearing a neckbrace..and  just got it the week before and her lawyer was the  first one in  our area to advertise on TV) anyway I stood up and told my lawyer that  if I ever needed a lawyer  again I would get the other one sitting across the table that was suing me..at least he knew what he was doing.

In that letter I had notarized, I also told them that if I  have a nervous breakown over this that I would side in court with the victim and cost the company more.

In 2 days I got a registered letter and a phone call telling me they settled what they could have anytime during that year, for the $45,000 and then I  quit that insurance company and went elsewhere.

I was also told when asking about if someone now were to fall on my sidewalk and there was nothing there to trip over but their own feet, would I lose the suit..they said  insurance companies pay out because it's cheaper to pay then to go to court. I had to get a million dollar umbrella policy in order to feel secure...that was 20 years ago...it wouldn't cover anything today.

People are sue happy, she had been warned about my dog and if she had  opened her eyes she would have seen the dog was chained and not gone closer to her.  also  I was told that because she owed me money I was to provide her safety on my property until it was  paid.

This person was legitimately hurt. It was a freak accident..but they had sued 4 times before  to others over all kinds of dumb actions on their part, but nothing of their past matters...

the only thing I can say is they got "blood money" as they term it here, and  a month later her husband had a heart attack and died, her son was in a car accident and broke his neck and their daughter "had to get married" at 15.

The day she received her money in the post office, I happened to be there picking up my mail, she turned and she said to me,
"Nice day isn't it, Renee".


My health has never been the same since. I trust no one. I don't know who you blame...but insurance is there to protect you, not make your life  worse...and when that depostion was over and the two lawyers shook hands and laughed and said that wasn't so bad, was it...my dislike for lawyers began.

Sorry, for spilling my guts..but I wanted to give just one example of a lawsuit that didn't have to go as far as it did.

By the way, I was told another reason why lawsuits are dragged out before settling is because the longer they wait, the money comes from investments and stocks and really very rarely is a loss to the insurance companies. (I am talking single small claims not catastrophic ones like huricanes etc.)



[This message has been edited by nakdthoughts (03-03-2003 11:56 AM).]

Balladeer
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35 posted 03-03-2003 02:00 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

WOW! That is some ordeal! Thanks for sharing that...I'm sure there are many such similar stories out there, too. It's too bad

I'll never look at Tupperware the same again!!!
Opeth
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36 posted 03-03-2003 02:16 PM       View Profile for Opeth   Email Opeth   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Opeth

What do lawyers and the Insurance Companies have in common?
nakdthoughts
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37 posted 03-03-2003 03:07 PM       View Profile for nakdthoughts   Email nakdthoughts   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for nakdthoughts

Oh  Michael I could tell you of another lawsuit against my husband and his company  being sued for $750,000 for a $1200.00 fountain..that sunk because the builders before him with the pool and the ones who prepared the soil, buried junk, branches, trash etc... deep into the ground and in the 5 years after, the house and everything on the property began to sink.

  I  could have died when I saw the papers stuck in a bookshelf while cleaning the kitchen one day.

He could have been asked to rebuild the fountain..but no..this wealthy man(owner of the Psychic Network on TV that used Dionne Warwick for the advertising) decided to sue everyone who worked on his property, for $750.000 each.

My husband said he didn't want to worry me,(my father had just died) but the papers were 9 months old. Needless to say, this added to the stress of our marriage and I had to take over and contact the company's insurance lawyers who weren't sure they would cover us since they weren't notified in time to prepare.

I had to force my husband to go to the lawyers several times..he was the only one  who was in attendance and besides paying out over $10,000 when it was over, to the homeowner, just for  my husbands work,
the lawyer probably made about $20,000. Every other person named in the lawsuit paid out between $35,000  to $300,000..so I guess we were lucky.

I wasn't allowed to ask questions or to help my husband..when I rewrote the questions in common words so my husband could answer the deposition papers, I was accused of trying to make him lie on them. When I called to find out when the suit was over and where my husband was, (of course off celebrating for 5 hrs in a bar, down the street) I was told  by the Lawyer he couldn't tell me a thing, as it was not me who was named in the lawsuit.

I was made to feel as if I was invisible, yet if it wasn't for my intervention, and if I had not contacted the insurance company we would have lost our home and everything. Instead I lost my sanity(temporarily), and my respect for lawyers.

Opeth, I don't have an answer...what do they have in common other than receiving money...and both wanting to be on the winning side.

Balladeer(Michael)..I have never invited another person on my property again...never bought any more tupperware or any house party items since


[This message has been edited by nakdthoughts (03-03-2003 03:11 PM).]

Brad
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38 posted 03-03-2003 06:28 PM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

Nakedthoughts,

Now, can someone please explain to me why America is so great?

Statistically and anecdotally, we have examples of what?

Tell me why I should raise my daughter in a country where people don't trust each other and nobody buys tupperware?

nakdthoughts
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39 posted 03-03-2003 09:31 PM       View Profile for nakdthoughts   Email nakdthoughts   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for nakdthoughts

my first laugh of the day....
I am an exception to the rule, in more than one way, Brad. And who needs tupperware when you can buy rubbermaid  

~~*~~

I can't complain about my life or anything else in it...these two things were not under my control...any other messes in my life, I have contributed to. The sad thing is, and I don't mean about America...but the sad thing is being good, doing the right thing, doesn't necessarily win out in the end. Crime does pay for many in our court system.

Right now (its been on the radio)a man I think in New York is going to be taken to court for killing an intruder in his home who  may have killed his family if he wasn't home to protect them. The District Attorney is adamant about putting him in jail. He  had a registered gun in another state and was in the process of registering it at the time of the shooting. When you have to wait for  someone to enter your home and commit a murder or rape or a kidnapping, before you can protect your own...the system has broken down.

In order for him to register the gun, he had to pay an attorney approximately $600.00 to do it by law. I am getting off the track here, but there are those who are abusing our laws and they are the defenders as well as the prosecutors.

It is who you know and if you have the money to pay for it that gets you the results you want. The average  and poor person has an unequal chance of coming away with the verdict in their favor.

Like I said in a response elsewhere,under one of my poems, I spent most of my life except the last 3-4 years living an idealistic  dream...was always contented with life and those around me ( not wealthy  in money but wealthy in friends and family.)

Now my eyes are open, my heart is closed and I have to live realistically. I believe we still have the greatest and fairest country in the world...although I am not sure about Canada...and wouldn't deny  Canadians thinking the same.

But I do get upset when you are trying to do what is right and still end up losing, though at least in this country you can have your say..and I did.
I told each of those lawyers off...and forced them to settle the lawsuits or I would have lost my home.

If victims can get large awards...they will. If there are caps on the lawsuits that are especially frivolous, that is fine with me.
But if people sue for amounts well above what their actual losses are(including lawyers fees) then I think that is wrong.  I don't think  suing someone should change a lifestyle of the victim into being rich if he wasn't before. Pay the bills accumulated. Pay for the the immediate and short term needs...but to pay in an amount to make it so a person doesn't have to work ever again (unless maimed for life) is ridiculous.

People sue for every and any reason, forcing us to have insurance just so we can hold onto the basest of lives.

enough said...thanks for allowing me to do so.

M
I usually don't get into the discussions, I read and learn and enjoy them.


[This message has been edited by nakdthoughts (03-03-2003 09:37 PM).]

Balladeer
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40 posted 03-03-2003 09:43 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

That's a fair question, Brad. I would say it boils down your perspective and your alternatives. First of all, it is not fair or realistic to generalize."...in a  country where people don't trust each other" is a generalization....and inaccurate. There are many weak points to the American way of life, as there are to every civilization on earth. To portray them as the standard is not fair. Yes, there are unscrupulous lawyers and frivolous lawsuits. Are they rampant....enough to disrupt one's way of life or make one cringe in fear? Hardly. How many people do you know who have gone through them? I know perhaps five. What percentage of the population has gone through them out of the 290 million inhabitants of the U.S.? 3%? 5%? There are cases of police brutality. How many? 2%? How many people do you think are actually afraid to leave their houses? I don't know any. Do you? Yes, it would be wonderful if there were no frivolous lawsuits, no court system whose inadequacies allow criminals to go free.....but there is no country on earth completely free of bad points. In this case, we acknowledge that good and bad exists in America. The question then is which outweighs the other? If you can only see the bad points that affect a microscopic persentage of the population and ignore the good ones, then you would be right not to live here. You would be happier in Utopia, wherever that is. From where I stand the good outweighs the bad by a very large margin but then I don't generalize. You began a thread months ago along similar lines by speaking of "..what all people do" and "...how all people act", etc and I simply discontinued my participation because an argument of such momentous generalizations has to be totally inaccurate. Should you judge America by whatever bad points you see and then magnify them to the point where you portray them as the rule and not the exception is not only unfair to the American way of life it is an indication of what you WANT to see. To me it sounds like you do not WANT to raise your family in the US and you are creating justifications with your generalizations....and that is, of course, your right. Perhaps there ARE better places to live. I have lived in five other countries and visited many more and I haven't found any I would trade for but that doesn't mean they don't exist. I've never been to Austrailia or New Zealand or Iceland. They may be wonderful places to live. Titia paints a beautiful picture of the Netherlands...that may be a great place to live also. Canada, from what I know, is also a wonderful place. If you were to investigate these places to live, would you be looking for the good points or the bad points - or both? Should you find bad points would you portray them as the norm the way you do for the US? Perhaps -perhaps not. I hope I am not displaying a derrogatory attitude here because that is not my intention. I believe you are very sincere in your uncertainties about returning and I respect your views.

    Are there bad people in America? Unscrupulous? Criminal? Dumb laws? Crooked politicians and corporate heads....? Injustices in the legal system? Oh yes. There are bad people because they have the freedom to be bad! It's a by-product of freedom that cannot be separated. The rights that make good people free are the same rights that allow bad people to be bad. There are few criminals in dictatorships. No one takes advantage of one's rights in a country where no one has rights to begin with. 9/11 was possible partly because of our laws which allow freedom for all and our country's willingness to open its borders to all seeking, or pretending to seek, a better way of life. With the good comes the bad...I happen to believe the good far outweighs the bad here.

As far as the tupperware....there you have a valid point!
Brad
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41 posted 03-03-2003 11:07 PM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

Thanks for responding, my question wasn't rhetorical.

Why did you laugh (assuming you laughed at the way I phrased the question?)

When you say America is still the greatest and fairest country in the world, you offer no evidence that it is so.

Why is that?

I want to be clear, I'm not questioning your love of America, I'm not questioning  that you should love the country (everybody does that), I am questioning the confusion between love of one's country and making claims that just aren't backed up anecdotally (your story, Michael's story) and statistically (take a look at the graph in my link).

Everybody is an individual, they say.

Or an exception as you say.

But the current administration doesn't act like that (they put the cap on the suits, didn't they?).

Are we all arguing against straw men?

You say your life ain't so bad, but my life ain't so bad and I live in South Korea.

Does that mean that America and South Korea are roughly equivalent?

If you laugh, I want to know why. If you get angry, I want to know why? If you get that funny feeling in your stomach, that somehow I'm going over the limits, that this isn't something that we can talk about or should talk about, I want to know why?

Why is this off limits?

I just don't see how we can fix these things without first talking about them.

It does us no good to think we can't fix them or we shouldn't try.
Brad
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42 posted 03-03-2003 11:28 PM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

Michael,

Thanks again. I am not trying to take an anti-American stance, but I do think you can generalize about America and Americans. My proof is that the administration does the same thing (and everybody who is non-American does it anyway).

I'm not trying to say that America is worse than other countries just that it isn't necessarily better at things that, I think, a lot of Americans care about (incarceration, infant mortality etc.).

Hmmmm, I'll give the honor of worst country in the world to Swaziland.

A few months ago, my wife asked me a question. I was going into a tirade about the problems here (like any true American, I complain about everything), and she asked me why America is better.

I couldn't really come up with a good answer except that we can change things more easily in America. Then I come on here and hear the exact opposite.

That there ain't nothing we can do about it.

------------------------

On the other hand, you may have a point that I  unconsciously don't want to return. I speak Korean but I can still turn it off when I want to. I can't turn off English.

I like being able to turn things off.

hush
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43 posted 03-04-2003 12:56 AM       View Profile for hush   Email hush   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for hush

nakdthoughts-

Actually, I'm pretty sure the intruder in the case you're talking about didn't die. In fact, I was watching something the other night... and if the homeowner who defended himself with a gun is sent to jail, he will, in fact, be sent to the same jail that the intruder is in right now.

But... here's an interesting situation. Let's say this guy's case goes to trial. Balladeer, how do you feel about it? Do you think this guy actually being threatened with jail time is ridiculous, perhaps even frivolous since it's only over the matter that the gun was unregistered?

Who's going to give him a fairer trial, his peers who likely make a comparable salary to his- or a panel of well-paid judges who might not understand why forking over 600(?) dollars to try to get a guhn registered is such a big deal? Or who might not understand that his wife won't be able to pay all the bills if his income is removed?

I'm not saying that judges would be incapable of understanding this... but I do think that average people, people who understand (by the very nature of jury duty) what it's like to be forcibly kept from everyday activities because of a situation they didn't create might be a little more empathetic.

[This message has been edited by hush (03-04-2003 12:57 AM).]

nakdthoughts
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44 posted 03-04-2003 06:54 AM       View Profile for nakdthoughts   Email nakdthoughts   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for nakdthoughts

Brad, I  thought  the tupperware remark was funny..both from Balladeer's remark and yours.
Not buying it doesn't mean anything, but my opinion on going to and having home parties.
If I don't have them, then I  can't be sued by anyone coming onto my property invited.

Sorry if you were serious about that. I never said I wasn't an individual, I said I myself am an exception. I am very idealistic..always have been, where as mostof my friends are realistic and don't always see the good without the bad.

I lived my life only seeing good, always believing the good in people. There is nothing wrong with  that nor with those who can see the other side of life. Don't take everything I say literal or anyone else for that matter.

And I believe Balladeer actually gave  a great response...if it wasn't for our freedoms, we wouldn't even have the freedom to make bad choices or mistakes in our lives. I was giving a few situations as examples. They are the few and far between in our society.

I would still never choose to live anywhere else on earth.

Hush, I was just giving the New York event as an example. I haven't been following it through. It was on talk radio, while I was driving and they were trying to get support for the man, raise funds for him.  I don't recall if the  intruder was killed or just hurt.

You can't say that jurists can't be swayed, or that certain evidence if collected wrong won't be heard.

I don't call it frivolous on this one, but I think it is a waste of taxpayers money for him to be tried as if he committed the crime instead of the intruder.  And it is because of the unregistered gun, which takes a while to process but was registered in another state he had moved from( If I have the correct information) The man was doing everything right legally. It would be different if he had bought a gun or stole one or wasn't having it registered.

I am not sure what a jury will decide or even if it will go to trial but I do think there will be a backlash on this one and plenty of support for him.

I am not sure either, if juries are told to consider he will be going to jail if found guilty and that his family will have no income. I haven't been to any trials so I don't know if that comes into play. I have watched some court tv and I can't recall ever having lawyers using that in their summations as to what will his family do.

And Brad, that doesn't mean America is a bad place to raise a child. (There is very little crime if any here where I live, in small town America. You can walk the streets at night without fear. I can even leave my doors unlocked and go for a walk.) It just shows you that some lawyers  etc...like to make headlines and this case will IF it goes to trial.  

There are many unfair awards, where the guilty goes free or receives compensation. But there are far more that don't.

As Balladeer said, we aren't perfect here. But we are closer to it than any other place Why else would so many try to cross our borders?


[This message has been edited by nakdthoughts (03-04-2003 04:04 PM).]

Opeth
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45 posted 03-04-2003 11:16 AM       View Profile for Opeth   Email Opeth   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Opeth

The Insurance companies need to earn a profit, not only for the principle owners, but for all stock-holders.

Lawyers need to earn a profit for themselves and their clients.

For them, it is all about money, which includes political and economic power.

About doctors, malpractice insurance, lawsuits involving doctors...and the crisis that faces America's health care system:

Logically, what factor or factors can be controlled in order to approach this issue in a feasible manner, thereby ending or at least minimizing this crisis?

Loyalties must be put aside. Emotions must not dictate the reasonings of decisions. Most importantly, it is the general populace who need quality health care and their needs must not be forgotten.
nakdthoughts
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46 posted 03-04-2003 01:21 PM       View Profile for nakdthoughts   Email nakdthoughts   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for nakdthoughts

hey O. I am in the general populace now...
can't afford Health Insurance...each medicine I need is about $70.00 a month almost as if they choose a number for any medicine, they all are around that amount when paying cash.

I pay up front and am charged more than the insurance companies pay. I learned that once when I had insurance but would pay upfront because my company took so long to pay the Dr. and he would complain. When I got reimbursed by the company they only paid me what they thought the medicine should cost. So all along I was paying the Dr. more than he would have gotten from the insurance company.

I told him so and when I lost my insurance, and I couldn't see him because of lack of funds he then told me he would give me a break in fees.  Drs and insurance companies, get what they can...they do not think of the best interests and health of their patients anymore.

Anyway..that's my story and I stand by it. I am finished on this topic..it just works me up making me need to refill another prescription that I can't afford.
M
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47 posted 03-04-2003 03:19 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

Well, Hush, thank you for asking for my opinion of that case. To be truthful I haven't followed it but, from what I have read here, I'll try to give my opinion. First, let me say that the "jury of one's peers" is balderdash. How many movie star-millionaire-athletes were on the O.J. jury? How many Talibans or whatever kind of freedom fighters were on the John Walker Lindh jury? The 'jury of one's peers' scenario only seems appropriate then the defendant is a blue collar worker with 3.6 children and 1.7 cars in his garage. Second, your comments present a very revealing point...which should we look for in a trial - the letter of the law or compassion? Your leaning toward juries indicates to me that you feel that compassion and understanding should be more important.....and, if so, I don't fault you for feeling that way. But that's exactly how the justice system gets so screwed up, don't you see? God, I wish I had the eloquence of a Brad or LR but I don't so please bear with me as I muddle my way through this because this is very important. The law is the law. Court cases need to be based on determining whether or not the law has been broken.....period. Excuses are not allowed. Whether the family would have a hard time financially if he were to go to jail is not allowed. Did he break the law knowingly is the only question that matters. Yes, there are bad laws. Many people call marijuana a bad law...many call mercy killings a bad law. If a law is bad enough people need to raise enough hell to get the law changed. Until that happens, however, whether they agree with a law or not, they know that by committing an act the are indeed breaking the law. They have the right to break it anyway and endure whatever consequences result from their actions....but they should expect those consequences. Excuses have no place in a court of law. Giving a not guilty verdict based on feeling sorry for the defendant has no place in a court of law....yet that's what juries do. That's also what you are advocating here. When you declare someone innocent for breaking a known law when you know they had indeed broken it, you are damaging the legal system. Do you think the meatheads on the OJ jury found him innocent because of the evidence? Of course not...and they probably gave no thought to the fact that they were damaging the legal system by their actions. Let me give you a very small example. There was a condo association here that allowed no children, not uncommon for South Florida. When a new tenant moved in they were given a document to sign that, should they acquire children by any means (birth, adoption,etc) they would have to leave. Everyone who lived there signed that statement. One couple, in their 40's, had a child. They fought it in court, refusing to move. They got the papers on their side, footage of their loving home, the cute little newborn held in mamma's arms, the whole bit. They claimed the restriction was unfair. They got a sympathetic jury to side with them. They won. What's the bottom line? THEY BROKE THE LAW. They willingly signed the paper to move in - without complaint - and then, when it went against them, they refused to honor their agreement. They injured our legal system. Their jury of sympathetic, caring and understanding jurors injured our legal system. In answer to the question "Did you break the law?" there should be no "Yes, but...." answer. Yes. Case closed. Then it is in the hands of the judges. That's why sentences give so much leeway. A sentence can be "1-15 years" for example. That is how the judges take into consideration the extenuating circumstances. You may berate the judges in any way you want but I have found the majority to be fair, honest and even compassionate people.

Now, getting back to the case you mentioned, let me ask these questions...

Was he aware of the law? Yes
Was he aware that until he registered it he was in violation of the law? Yes
By using it did he break the law? Yes.

Case closed.

Now we can theorize that he knew the law and simply didn't either consider it important enough to take care of immediately or that he didn't have the money necessary to register it....or a variety of thoughts. They change nothing. If someone had told him he would need 600 bucks in 24 hours to save his daughter's life, I can assure you he would have come up with 600 bucks. This was simply not a priority to him. I can buy that. I may have done the same thing. The point is that he had to do it KNOWING he was in violation of the law and, if it were discovered, he would have to pay the consequences. He took that chance in much the same way people drive without insurance even though having it is a state law. He also may have reasoned that, if threatened, he would use the gun to protect him family regardless if he were breaking the law or not. No problem there. He considered the safety of his family more important than breaking this seemingly insignificant law. I would have done the same. But, basically, what you are asking is...this man broke the law. Should he be found guilty? There can be no other answer than - yes. When we find people innocent for breaking the law our system of justice is in shambles.

He possessed an unregistered gun. Possession of an unregistered gun is against the law. He broke the law.

I would find him guilty of possession of an unregistered weapon and fine him, which I'm sure would be an appropriate sentence. It is certainly not an offense punishable by imprisonment unless he is a repeat offender. Funny how the law works, isn't it? The fact that he killed someone in his home who posed a threat to his family is justifiable and within the law but the fact that he used basically an illegal means to do it is not...but the only charge he should face is possessing that illegal means. ANyway, that's how I see it..

Take that, Judge Judy!!!!!!!
nakdthoughts
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48 posted 03-04-2003 04:20 PM       View Profile for nakdthoughts   Email nakdthoughts   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for nakdthoughts

Just one comment Michael. From what I heard  by the commentator on the radio and the man himself, he had a registered gun, BUT
he had moved to a new state where the only way it gets registered to be legal is through paying an attorney $600.00 and he did that. Problem is the registration takes  6 weeks or so. So he actually did everything he needed to do. The illegal thing was using the gun to protect his family from the intruder in his home, before the papers were processed and the registration sent to him.

It was in the process, so yes technically he is guilty but it is like when you go to the bank...and you deposit money on a Friday. You don't have the cash in your hand and yet it isn't in the bank ...so you can't write a check on it locally or they will cash it faster than it is processed into your account(and you would bounce the check if you don't have enough to cover it before the deposit)

This happened to me once when I was young and stupid..so  from  then on I would cash the check in the bank..then go back and deposit it ..cash  deposits are instant...doesn't that seem dumb to have to do? They trusted me enough to give me the cash and yet the check had to clear several days later...oh well...the point being..this man's gun registration was in limbo...he paid for and signed the papers..they just hadn't processed it yet.

Anyway, I do believe even if found guilty of some law the judge will probably go easy on him...maybe just a fine...only thing is  once he's guilty of that, the intruder will probably sue him for the gunshot wound and costs to him...that's where the system falls apart too. When someone is in the process of a crime and gets hurt...I don't think he should be able to sue anyone..he took a chance.

Hope you are having a good day..I have been shoveling "leftover snow"..a good release.  
By the way, I think I will go look  this story up on line and see what the actual report was.
M


[This message has been edited by nakdthoughts (03-04-2003 04:22 PM).]

Balladeer
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49 posted 03-04-2003 04:36 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

Aha...well, I think that would certainly change things. At least he could present the arguement that he had complied with the law by paying the dues and felt that, once his monies had been accepted, he would be entitled to have his weapon legally. It may not be correct and may not fly but there is a certain reasonability to that argument that could not be ignored. Then it would be up to the judge to give him the benefit of the doubt or not...

Doing ok here..playing golf and sweating under this brutal sun. Happy shoveling!!
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