December 2009

Deceased Man’s Estate Files Fayetteville, North Carolina Wrongful Death Lawsuit Against Shopping Mall and Nightclub

December 30, 2009, by Michael A. DeMayo

The family of Alejandro Gonzales Reyes has filed a North Carolina wrongful death lawsuit against the Palomino nightclub and the owners of the shopping center where the now-defunct business was located. Reyes was fatally shot on January 11 outside the club. Now, the 31-year-old’s estate is seeking financial recovery for the two young children that he left behind.

The defendants named in the Fayetteville, North Carolina wrongful death complaint are Bayview Financial L.P., Bayview Loan Servicing LLC, Palomino of Fayetteville Inc., and Sophia and Bill Agapion.

According to the Fayetteville, North Carolina wrongful death complaint, a court order had been issued to the mortgage company and the Agapions to stop criminal activity at the shopping center. State law also allowed them to evict the club for such offenses.

The Reyes’ North Carolina wrongful death attorney says that the 31-year-old might still be alive today if only the defendants had followed the court order. He cites inadequate security in the parking lot and at the club.

Last year, Fayetteville police sued Bill, Palomino, and Bayview. The complaint claimed that the shopping complex was a public nuisance. The lawsuit contended that a number of clubs on the property, including South Beach, Palomino, and Crazy Dave’s Cabaret, were a burden because of the number of assaults, break-ins, drug crimes, and shootings that occurred at the three night spots and in their parking lots. In March, three weeks after Reyes was killed, a judge ordered all three clubs, and a fourth one, permanently shut down.

Premises Liability
A property owner or overseer can be sued for North Carolina premises liability or wrongful death if there was a history of crimes committed on the property or in the area and the defendant did not do enough to protect patrons, visitors, and others from becoming the victims of similar crimes. Premises owners must provide proper security so that violent crimes and petty crimes do not cause injury or death.

Man’s estate sues Palomino nightclub, others over slaying, FayeObserver, December 30, 2009

Suspect arrested, charged in bar shooting, ABC Local, January 11, 2009

North Carolina Personal Injury Lawsuit Accuses Panthers Linebacker Jon Beason of Assault

December 22, 2009, by Michael A. DeMayo

A football fan who says that he was assaulted by Carolina Panthers linebacker Jon Beason is suing the football player for North Carolina personal injury. Gregory Frye says Beason beat him in Charlotte on November 15 for telling another Panthers football player that he had seen the linebacker “doing coke with some girl” at Lake Norman last June.

On November 30, police arrested Beason. The 24-year-old linebacker, who is one of the football team’s captains and the leading tackler, denied the assault and drug allegations. He was charged with aggravated assault over the incident, but the misdemeanor charge was dropped due to insufficient evidence. Frye’s North Carolina injury attorney, however, says that his client will continue pursuing his claim.

According to the Charlotte, North Carolina injury lawsuit, Beason’s bodyguard told Frye, 29, that the football player wasn’t happy with his comments and wanted to talk to him. Frye says he suggested to Beason that they talk outside.

He says Beason punched him on the face. After he fell to the ground, he claims he was kicked and then hit on the head. Frye says he didn’t fight back. In his North Carolina personal injury complaint Frye claims that Beason admitted to striking the plaintiff.

Frye is seeking damages greater than $10,000. He says he sustained a facial fracture and a crushed nasal cavity, and he suffered swelling on the left side of his head from the alleged assault.

Charlotte, North Carolina Personal Injury
Persons who have been injured during an altercation or are victims of violent crimes may have grounds for suing an assailant for North Carolina personal injury. This claim is separate from criminal charges filed by prosecutors. This means that even if charges are dropped or a person is found not guilty by a jury, you still may be able to obtain personal injury recovery.

Aggravated assault charges dropped against Panthers’ player Jon Beason, Global Grind, December 11, 2009

Pro Bowl LB Beason charged with aggravated assault at strip club, Gaston Gazette, December 1, 2009

Man files civil lawsuit against Panthers’ Beason, Charlotte Observer, December 1, 2009

Related Web Resources:
Jon Beason, NFL

Carolina Panthers

Types of Personal Injury Damages, Justia

North Carolina Wrongful Death Settlement Reached Between City of Charlotte and Family of Woman Fatally Struck by Fallen Tree

December 9, 2009, by Michael A. DeMayo

A Charlotte, North Carolina wrongful death settlement has been reached between the city and the family of Kay Plyler. The agreement comes today just as jury selection in the civil trial was about to begin.

Plyler died in March 2008 when a tree fell on the car that she and her daughter Taylor, then 14, were riding in. Plyler, who was crushed in the freak accident died from her injuries. Tyler survived the falling tree accident but was injured.

The Plyler family’s North Carolina wrongful death attorneys have claimed that the city of Charlotte was aware that the tree’s root system was decaying yet failed to warn the public that the tree was dangerous. Meantime, Charlotte’s lawyers had argued that the city was unaware that the tree roots were rotting.

The terms of the Charlotte wrongful death settlement is confidential and settlement amount still needs to be approved by the Charlotte City Council. Attorneys for both sides say that the money will cover Taylor’s college education. Plyler’s son and husband were also awarded damages.

Getting hit by a falling tree, especially a large one, can cause serious injuries to victims. Just last week, a 33-year-old man filed a personal injury lawsuit against the city of New York, Central Park, and the Central Park Conservancy for the spinal cord injuries and traumatic brain injuries he sustained when a limb from one of the trees in the park struck him last summer. According to statistics, between 1995 – 2007, more than four hundred people were killed in accidents involving falling limbs or trees.

Premise owners can be held liable for North Carolina premises liability or wrongful death if there is a hazard on the property that could have or should have been remedied but wasn’t and, as a result, causes injury or death. Rotting trees are more at risk of falling when the soil is soggy or the winds are high. It is a premise owner’s responsibility to ensure that this doesn’t happen.

Settlement Reached In Wrongful Death Lawsuit, WSCOTV, December 7, 2009

City settles suit over fatal tree accident, Charlotte Observer, December 9, 2009

Related Web Resources:
Kay Plyler, Death Notice, Charlotte Observer, March 14, 2008

Recognizing Tree Hazards, Trees are Good

NC DOT to Study State Bridges Following Second Fatal Fall

December 3, 2009, by Michael A. DeMayo

The North Carolina Department of Transportation is examining some 17,000 bridges to determine if safety measures can be taken to prevent more fatal falls. On Friday, 33-year-old Carroll Lee Eames fell to his death while helping the car crash victims of a multi-vehicle wreck on the Interestate-440 bridge on the Outer Beltline.

Police say Eames fell through the gap between two bridges as he jumped over a concrete barrier to avoid being hit by an oncoming vehicle. Unfortunately, a 30-foot drop to Crabtree Creek awaited him on the other side of the barrier and Eames died from injuries he sustained during the fall accident.

In October 2005, 26-year-old Todd Fletcher died when he fell off the Inner Beltline Bridge while also helping North Carolina car accident victims. Fletcher’s father, Done Fletcher, filed a North Carolina wrongful death claim over the tragic accident.

According to Raleigh Mayor Charles Meeker, the NDCOT did put up a fence to prevent people from going over the edge on the Inner Beltline side, but there is no such barrier on the Outer Beltline side where Eames’s North Carolina fall accident happened. The opening that separates the two bridges is about five feet.

Eames’s father, Caroll Eames Sr., is quoted in the as saying that he feels that the state “took my son’s life away.” Eames Sr. says that the state must have known that area was a safety hazard.

Luis Jesus Coyt, a passenger in one of the vehicles involved in the North Carolina car crash that Eames Jr. was assisting with also fell off the Outer Beltline bridge. He sustained minor injuries.

Currently, the NCDOT lacks guidelines requiring that all bridges have standard protective rails. In several instances, fences were added to certain bridges after pedestrians had already fallen.

North Carolina Premises Liability
Property owners and managers can be held liable for North Carolina premises liability if a hazard on a premise contributed to causing personal injury or wrongful death and that danger could have or should have been remedied.

Accident spurs state to study bridges,, December 1, 2009

Good Samaritan falls from I-440 bridge, dies, CharlotteObserver, November 28, 2009

NC DOT begins bridge study after fatal plunge, WECT, December 1, 2009

Related Web Resources:

North Carolina Department of Transportation

North Carolina Bridge Information

More Reason to Prevent North Carolina Nursing Home Fall Accidents: Men More at Risk of Dying from Hip Fractures While Women Are More Likely to Sustain The Injury

December 1, 2009, by Michael A. DeMayo

According to a study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, women are up to three times more likely to sustain hip fractures than men, and the latter are more likely to die from having these breaks. This is why it is so important that assisted living facilities make sure that unnecessary nursing home fall accidents do not happen.

Adults in the 65 and over age group are most vulnerable to suffering from hip fractures. Other facts, based on 39 studies involving 155,000 males and almost 600,000 women, ages 50 and over, with hip fractures:

• Older women have a six times greater chance of dying after a hip fracture than women who didn’t sustain a break.
• Older men are eight times more likely to pass away within the first three months of sustaining a hip fracture.
• After a hip fracture, for the next 10 years, the patient, whether female or male, is at higher risk of dying.
• Men with hip fractures are more likely to die from pneumonia, sepsis, or other infections than their female counterparts.

While researchers do not know why the death rate increases when someone has a hip fracture, Dr. Cathleen Colon-Emeric explained to CNN that hip fractures cause a major strain to what was likely an already frail body. One reason that women are more susceptible to hip fractures as they grow older is that they tend to naturally lose bone after going into menopause. As for many of the men who do sustain hip fractures, they usually will have had an underlying medical condition at the time that the injury happened.

There are preventive measures that can be taken to prevent hip fractures from happening, including making sure that elderly persons get enough vitamins, calcium, exercise, as well as engage in activities that stimulate bone formation. In addition to these simple measures, nursing homes can make sure that the facility is designed in a way to minimize the risk of falling: lowered bed heights, bedrails, grab bars, elevated toilet seats, and hallway handrails are some effective tools. Also, nursing home workers can:

• Assist the patients who need physical help when getting around.
• Closely supervising residents who are fall risks.
• If a fall accident happens, giving a patient a hip pad can prevent hip fractures.
• Monitor patients who are heavily sedated or under medication that disorients them.

Unfortunately, North Carolina falls accidents involving the elderly do happen.

You may have grounds for filing a Charlotte, North Carolina nursing home neglect case.

Hip fractures more deadly to men, Paging Dr. Gupta Blog/CNN, March 15, 2010

Falls in Nursing Homes, CDC

Related Web Resources:
Nursing Homes, North Carolina Division of Aging and Adult Services

Medicare, US Department of Health and Human Services

Annals of Internal Medicine


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