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Case Results

Case: 1st Degree Felony DUI

Location: Andover, MN

Maximum Penalty: A Felony DUI related offense is punishable by a maximum of 7 years in jail and/or a $14,000.00 dollar fine, or both.
Facts: Client was arrested after admitting to drinking and failed a portable breath test after sliding off the road after several inches of snow had fallen.
Result: Client was ordered to follow the recommendations of a chemical dependency assessment (which client had already completed) which addressed client's past alcohol issues and have no same or similar conduct during probationary period. By being remorseful, proactive with interlock, getting a chemical assessment and relapse treatment plan and having client prepared for his court date, the judge was persuaded that the mandatory minimum should not be imposed
Sentence: Felony DUI charge was dismissed as well as the Gross Misdemeanor Driving after Cancellation

Case: 2nd Degree Gross Misdemeanor DUI

Location: Maple Grove, MN

Maximum Penalty: 1 Year in Jail, $3,000 fine per offense
Facts: Client was stopped by police after striking a pole, BAC tested considerably over .16. Client had a prior offense in the last 10 years - vehicle was forfeited due to the offense being a 2nd Degree Over. 08.
Result: Received chemical dependency assessment - deal reached with prosecutor to avoid jail time and vehice was returned
Sentence: 30 days home monitoring instead of jail time or workhouse, follow the recommendations of chemical dependency assessment

Case: 3rd Degree DUI, Refusal to Test, Criminal Damage to Property, Hit and Run

Maximum Penalty: 1 Year in Jail, $3,000 fine per offense
Facts: Client stopped for rear ending another occupied vehicle causing injury, leaving the scene, refusing to take the Intoxilyzer test and being uncooperative with police.
Result: Pled to 3rd Degree Refusal, dismiss all other charges
Sentence: No jail time, fine of $200.00, attend DUI education class, 3 year administrative probation

Case: 4th Degree DUI, Over .08, Driving after Revocation

Maximum Penalty: 90 days in jail, $1,000 fine per offense
Facts: Client stopped for weaving and poor driving conduct and had a revoked driver’s license. Tested over .10 on PBT and Intoxilyzer.
Result: Dismissed DUI and DAR, amended Over .08 to Careless Driving
Sentence: No jail time, fine of $150.00, attend DUI education class, 1 year administrative probation

Case: 2nd Degree DUI, 2nd Degree Over .08

Maximum Penalty: 1 Year in Jail, $3,000 fine per offense
Facts: Client stopped for failing to signal, tested .17 and had 2 children in car
Result: Reduced to 3rd Degree Over .08, Dismiss all other charges
Sentence: Serve 30 days in jail, all by electronic home monitoring, fine of $275, 3 year probation, good time allows for total of 18 days by electronic home monitoring

Case: Domestic Assault (Inflict Bodily Harm), 5th Degree Assault

Maximum Penalty: 90 days in jail, $1,000 fine per offense
Facts: Client alleged to have assaulted his girlfriend and her child.
Result: Dismissed All Counts
Sentence: Case dismissed, no costs, probation or fees

Case: Underage Drink and Drive

Maximum Penalty: 90 days in jail, $1,000 fine
Facts: Client, 19, driving erratically with friends in car, stopped and tested .04.
Result: Amended and Reduced to Minor Consumption
Sentence: Amended to Minor Consumption, fine of $275, no license revocation

Case: Domestic Assault (Inflict Bodily Harm), 5th Degree Assault

Maximum Penalty: 90 days in jail, $1,000 fine per offense
Facts: Client alleged to have assaulted his girlfriend while holding their child.
Result: Stay of Imposition of Sentence on Disorderly Conduct
Sentence: Stay of Imposition of Sentence on Disorderly Conduct, Vacate and Dismiss after 1 year, No same or similar, No jail time, $100 prosecution costs

Case: Driving without Insurance (Accident, Driving after Revocation

Maximum Penalty: 90 days in jail, $1,000 fine per offense
Facts: Client in accident without a valid license and no insurance.
Result: Continue for Dismissal on No Insurance, Dismiss DAR
Sentence: Continue for Dismissal, vacate and dismiss after 1 year, No same or similar, No jail time, $100 prosecution costs, pay restitution

Case: Offering of Forged Check (Felony), Possession of Stolen Checks (Felony)

Maximum Penalty: 10 Years in jail, and/or $20,000 fine per offense
Facts: Client behind on bills and rent, client receives a check from a friend that she is skeptical about but cashes anyway. Check was stolen and once cashed by client became a crime despite no involvement in the obtaining of the check.
Result: Continue for Dismissal (Diversion) on Felony Charges
Sentence: Continue for Dismissal, vacate and dismiss after 1 year, No same or similar, No jail time, Diversion Fee, no restitution

Case: 4th Degree Felony Assault on Police Officer

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Case: 3rd Degree DUI, Refusal to Test, Criminal Damage to Property, Hit and Run

Maximum Penalty: 1 Year in Jail, $3,000 fine per offense
Result: Pled to 3rd Degree Refusal, dismiss all other charges
Facts: Client stopped for rear ending another occupied vehicle causing injury, leaving the scene, refusing to take the Intoxilyzer test and being uncooperative with police.
Sentence: No jail time, fine of $200.00, attend DUI education class, 3 year administrative probation

Case: 4th Degree DUI, Over .08, Driving after Revocation

Maximum Penalty: 90 days in jail, $1,000 fine per offense
Result: Dismissed DUI and DAR, amended Over .08 to Careless Driving
Facts: Client stopped for weaving and poor driving conduct and had a revoked driver’s license. Tested over .10 on PBT and Intoxilyzer.
Sentence: No jail time, fine of $150.00, attend DUI education class, 1 year administrative probation

Case: 2nd Degree DUI, 2nd Degree Over .08

Maximum Penalty: 1 Year in Jail, $3,000 fine per offense
Result: Reduced to 3rd Degree Over .08, Dismiss all other charges
Facts: Client stopped for failing to signal, tested .17 and had 2 children in car
Sentence: Serve 30 days in jail, all by electronic home monitoring, fine of $275, 3 year probation, good time allows for total of 18 days by electronic home monitoring

Case: Domestic Assault (Inflict Bodily Harm), 5th Degree Assault

Maximum Penalty: 90 days in jail, $1,000 fine per offense
Result: Dismissed All Counts
Facts: Client alleged to have assaulted his girlfriend and her child.
Sentence: Case dismissed, no costs, probation or fees

Case: Underage Drink and Drive

Maximum Penalty: 90 days in jail, $1,000 fine
Result: Amended and Reduced to Minor Consumption
Facts: Client, 19, driving erratically with friends in car, stopped and tested .04.
Sentence: Amended to Minor Consumption, fine of $275, no license revocation

Case: Domestic Assault (Inflict Bodily Harm), 5th Degree Assault

Maximum Penalty: 90 days in jail, $1,000 fine per offense
Result: Stay of Imposition of Sentence on Disorderly Conduct
Facts: Client alleged to have assaulted his girlfriend while holding their child.
Sentence: Stay of Imposition of Sentence on Disorderly Conduct, Vacate and Dismiss after 1 year, No same or similar, No jail time, $100 prosecution costs

Case: Driving without Insurance (Accident, Driving after Revocation

Maximum Penalty: 90 days in jail, $1,000 fine per offense
Result: Continue for Dismissal on No Insurance, Dismiss DAR
Facts: Client in accident without a valid license and no insurance.
Sentence: Continue for Dismissal, vacate and dismiss after 1 year, No same or similar, No jail time, $100 prosecution costs, pay restitution

Case: Offering of Forged Check (Felony), Possession of Stolen Checks (Felony)

Maximum Penalty: 10 Years in jail, and/or $20,000 fine per offense

Result: Continue for Dismissal (Diversion) on Felony Charges

Facts: Client behind on bills and rent, client receives a check from a friend that she is skeptical about but cashes anyway. Check was stolen and once cashed by client became a crime despite no involvement in the obtaining of the check.

Sentence: Continue for Dismissal, vacate and dismiss after 1 year, No same or similar, No jail time, Diversion Fee, no restitution

Case: 4th Degree Felony Assault on Police Officer

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Summary Judgment for over $2.5 Million dollars in an “Insurance Bad Faith” case. Kissoondath v. U.S. Fire Ins. Co.

The Kissoondath case is second in importance in Minnesota “Bad Faith” law only to the landmark Short v. Dairyland case. The insurance company in Kissoondath had refused to pay its $350,000 limits to my two clients who were injured in an automobile accident. Both clients had serious injuries when their parked car was struck by a taxi. However, the taxi driver claimed they were not even in the car when he hit it. It was clear that the jury did not believe him, and the insurance company’s attempt to minimize my clients’ serious injuries also backfired. The jury found their damages exceeded $2.2 million dollars. I subsequently brought a bad faith case against the insurance company, and after a reversal of an adverse jury verdict by the Minnesota Court of Appeals (because of a multitude of major errors by the trial judge), we moved for and were granted summary judgment. Kissoondath v. U.S. Fire Ins. Co., 620 N.W.2d 909 (Minn.App.2001), rev. denied (Minn. Apr. 17, 2001)(our original successful appeal of adverse jury verdict); Kissoondath v. United States Fire Ins. Co., 2002 WL 31749100(Minn.App. 2002), rev. denied, February 26, 2003 (affirmance of our summary judgment)

Summary Judgment for over $1 Million in an insurance “Bad Faith” case. Short v. Dairyland Insurance Co.

This case is, without question, Minnesota’s leading case on insurance "bad faith”. Injured persons and their attorneys rely upon this case to force insurance companies to pay claims they are responsible for, or face the consequences of being in “bad faith.”
In this case, a drunk driver (who also had not taken his "anti-blackout" medication) crossed the centerline and killed Donald Morin, a 40-year old husband, high wage earner, and father of five young children. The drunk driver had only $25,000 of liability coverage from Dairyland Insurance Company, and it was immediately clear he was at fault, and that the damages to Mr. Morin's family vastly exceeded his $25,000 limits. However, Dairyland’s adjuster tried to force the Morin family to take less than the full limits by misrepresenting the effect of Minnesota’s No-fault law and claiming they would get less if they sued their insured drunk driver. We did sue him, a jury awarded $745,000, and after the Minnesota Supreme Court affirmed Summary Judgment, Dairyland had to pay, with interest, well over one million dollars. Short v. Dairyland Insurance Co., 334 N.W.2d 384 (Minn. 1984)

$1.2 Million Dollar Verdict for the death of a child.

The jury in this recent case rejected an insurance company’s attempt to blame the parent of a 2½ year old who was run over and killed by a motorist at a neighborhood “block party.” The insurance company claimed the parents were the cause of their son’s death because they allowing their child to be across the street with pre-teen girls who were watching him, but the jury rightly found the true cause was the motorist who was driving way too fast through this “block party” and had her radio so loud she could not hear the crowd screaming at here to stop. The jury instead placed all causal fault on the driver and awarded $1.2 million dollars in damages.

$3 Million Dollar settlements for two railroad employees.

Two crew members on a locomotive were killed when they were taking a train down a mainline track. The switches on the track were supposed to be “lined” so that they would continue on the mainline. However, the crew on another railroad had failed to do so. As a result, their train left the mainline and traveled down another track into a rail yard, where it ran into parked rail cars. The impact instantly killed both men

$950,000 settlement for railroad employee

Our clients were the family of a railroad conductor who was taken by a van out to a rural railroad crossing, where he was to replace another train crew. It was nighttime, and when the driver of their van reached the crossing, he crossed the tracks and pulled to the side, but still remained in the westbound lane of travel. When the rear doors of the van were opened, so the crew could get their equipment, they covered the flashing tail lights of the van, rendering the van invisible to other westbound drivers. A second vehicle, also proceeding westbound, could not see the stopped van. That driver was also driving under the influence. Our client was crushed between the two vehicles and died at the scene.

$2,153,479.36 verdict for PTSD Suffered by a Train Crew

This verdict was for two Locomotive Engineers who each suffered Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). They were operating a train on the mainline, but unbeknownst to them, a train ahead of them on an adjacent track was hauling a flat car where the load had come loose. The load that had come loose consisted of massive steel I-Beams, which were now pointed at my client’s oncoming train like spears. Our clients’ locomotive was ripped apart, but they fortunately did not suffer major physical injuries. However, each had PTSD that prevented them from returning to their longtime job as Engineers. The railroad tried to convince the jury that both men really were not injured, and could not be disable by a psychological injury. The jury strongly rejected the railroad’s defense, and awarded both men a combined amount of over $2 million dollars in damages.

$4 Million Dollar Settlement for Amputation

Our client in this case was a railroad conductor performing switching operations in a rail yard. His co-worker made an improper movement of a train, and caused the amputation.

$2.85 Million Dollar Settlement for Brain injury

Our client was injured in a motor vehicle accident with another vehicle that failed to yield to him. The insurance company argued that he had healed so well that no one could even tell he was brain injured, but we were able to show that his injury, while hidden, in fact had a profound effect on his life.

$2 Million Dollar Settlement for Spinal Surgeries and PTSD

Our client was a passenger in a railroad transport van that left the road in bad weather because the van’s tires were in such poor condition. We were able to get our investigator to the scene immediately, who confirmed the van’s tires were bald. He required cervical and lumbar surgery and also suffered from PTSD. While the railroad argued that his ongoing problems were not nearly as severe as we claimed, we ultimately were able to show with experts the severity of his injuries.

$1.2 Million dollar Settlement for Back Injury and PTSD.

This settlement was for a railroad engineer who was being transported by a van in bad weather. The driver lost control and the vehicle skidded out of control on its side before crashing. Our client had a non-operative lumbar disc injury and PTSD. Because our client had not undergone surgery, and his PTSD was not objectively diagnosable, the railroad strongly contested both injuries. The railroad refused to offer a fair amount, until we were nearly at the courthouse steps and the railroad could see we were prepared to go to trial.

$1 Million Dollar Settlement for multiple “crush injuries”

Our client was injured while working at a railcar repair facility, when a railcar came loose from a crane and crushed his torso and pelvis. He was working as a “ground man” in unloading two railcars brought in to the facility on trucks. The person in charge of the procedure attached hooks only to the center of each end of the car, creating a stability concern expressed by our client. However, the supervisor told our client to follow his instructions. Our client turned out to be correct, and the car indeed became unstable and struck our client. His torso, ribs and pelvis were crushed, and he also ended up with many surgical complications. The case was particular challenging because the defense sought to have the case governed by worker compensation, which would have greatly restricted the amount of money he could recover. We were successful in fighting off this attempt.

$1.25 Million Dollar Products Liability Settlement for Brain Injury

Our client in this case was a young girl who was a passenger in a car that was broadsided at high speed at an intersection by a driver who blew the red light. However, this driver had very low insurance limits. Because a product defect contributed to her injury, we were able to obtain a settlement for her for over one million dollars.

$780,000 settlement by young man for sexual abuse

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