Carr v Val Verde School District
Case Name: BYRON CARR, a minor, by and through his Guardian Ad Litem BLANCA LOPEZ, v. VAL VERDE UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT and LAIDLAW TRANSIT, INC.
Case No: RIC 443904
Court: Riverside County Superior Court
Trial Judge: Judge Kenneth Andreen
Settlement Date: 11/02/09 (Order on Petition for Compromise signed 4/6/10)
Trial date: 11/03/09
Plaintiff’s Attorney: John Jahrmarkt, Esq. JAHRMARKT & ASSOCIATES; Gary A. Dordick, Esq. LAW OFFICES OF GARY A. DORDICK
Defense Attorney: Dana John McCune, Esq. MCCUNE & HARPER Raymond F. Dolen, Esq. BRUNICK, MCELHANEY & BECKETT Matthew S. Conant, Esq. Jeffrey D. Hosking, Esq. LOMBARDI, LOPER & CONANT, LLP
Experts: Plaintiff: Jan Roughan – Life Care Arcadia, California Lawrence Miller, M.D. – Rehabilitation Beverly Hills, California Formuzis, Pickersgill & Hunt – Economist Santa Ana, California Lester Zackler, Ph.D – Neuro-Psychiatrist Sherman Oaks, California Michael E. Gold, M.D. – Neurologist Santa Monica, California Howard L. Dorne, M.D. – Interventional Neuro-Radiologist Orange, California George K. Henry, Ph.D – Neuro-Physiologist Los Angeles, California David Frankel, M.D. – Emergency Room Medicine Los Angeles, California Sandra Schneider – Vocational Rehabilitation Los Angeles, California Woody Fitzmaurice – Bus Transportation Expert Carmel, Indiana Patrick Fayne, EdD – School Administration Paso Robles, California
Defense: Brian K. Herman – Interventional Neuro-Radiologist Rancho Mirage, California Donald W. Larsen M.D. – Interventional Neuro-Radiologist Rancho Mirage, California Edwin C. Amos – Neurologist Santa Monica, California H. Richard Adams – Rehabilitation Beverly Hills, California Penney Stone – RN – Nursing Riverside, California Augustine Zemba – Bus Transportation Expert Carmel, Indiana Dave Jackson – School Administration Winona, Minnesota Barry I. Ludwig, M.D. – Neurologist Los Angeles, California Daniel E. Zehler, PSY.D – Neuro-Physiologist Long Beach, California Russ Kino – Emergency Room Medicine Encino, California Gene Bruno – Life Care and Vocational Rehabilitation Encino, California Stephanie Rizzardi – Economist Pasadena, California
Statement of Facts: On Friday, January 28, 2005, at 3:00 pm, Plaintiff was a 15 year old student at a High School within Defendant Val Verde Unified School District in Moreno Valley, California when he suffered a stroke for unknown reasons. At the time, Plaintiff was boarding a school bus operated by Defendant Laidlaw Transit, Inc. while on school grounds when he passed out. Plaintiff was taken off the bus by school staff and brought to the school health office where he was attended to by the school health technician for nearly one and one half hours before 911 was called. Plaintiff contended that some or all of his injuries were caused by the failure to call 911 earlier.
Damages: After Plaintiff was transported to the hospital on the day of the incident, he was in a coma for approximately one month and was not released from the hospital until 58 days from the date of his stroke. Following release, Plaintiff underwent six followup surgeries for his injuries and will suffer from permanent left sided paralasis of the arm and hand, weakness of left leg and foot, diminished cognitive function and speech. Plaintiff has a prosthetic scull implant and lost about one third of his brain tissue. Past Medical expenses totaled in excess of $920,000.
Additional Information: Seventeen (17) independent witnesses and twenty three (23) expert witnesses were deposed prior to settlement. Defendant Val Verde Unified School District settled on November 2, 2009 in mediation before the Honorable Charles Rubin one day prior to trial for the sum of $2,500,000. Defendant Laidlaw Transit, Inc. settled for $450,000 thereafter. The settlement included establishment of a special needs trust and the purchase of an annuity and was finalized on April 6, 2010 when the court approved the petition for compromise.