municipal liability News

How Police Dog Bites Woman Became a Federal Case

Dog bites man may not be a news story — but in nine western states, it’s grounds for a constitutional case. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit has allowed a lawsuit by a woman who fell asleep …

South Carolina Jury Awards $97 Million in Mayor’s Shooting

A federal jury in Charleston has awarded the family of the former mayor of Cottageville $97 million for his shooting death. The jury reached the decision in the negligence and wrongful death suit filed by the family of Burt Reeves. …

Florida Trooper Case Raises Driver Data Privacy Issues

Florida Highway Patrol Trooper Donna Jane Watts was on routine patrol early one morning when a Miami police car whizzed past at speeds that would eventually top 120 mph. Even with her blue lights flashing and siren blaring, it took …

Mississippi Town Told Liability Insurance Will Rise 15%

What the city of Columbus, Miss., pays for liability insurance will increase 15 percent in 2014. WCBI-TV in Columbus reported that insurance consultant Eddie Mauck told officials this week that three or four major police claims combined with some others …

Brain-Damaged Inmate Settles With Penn. County; Insurer to Pay $65K

A northwestern Pennsylvania county’s insurance company is paying $65,000 to settle claims by a former inmate left brain-damaged after a jail guard allegedly slammed him into a wall. The Erie Times-News reports Erie County isn’t acknowledging any wrongdoing in approving …

Mississippi Firms Want City, Road Contractor Held Liable for Lost Business

Four businesses on a busy Hattiesburg Street are suing Hattiesburg city government, claiming a street improvement project has cost them customers. The project on Hardy Street began Oct. 30, 2012, according to The Hattiesburg American. The work is nearly complete …

Tennessee Court Finds City Not Liable for Death by Fallen Tree

The Tennessee Court of Appeals has ruled that Knoxville isn’t liable for a tree that fell on and killed a woman driving on a city street. Judge Thomas R. Frierson wrote for the court that even if the city knew …

Vermont City Buys Insurance Amid F-35 Debate

Burlington, Vermont’s largest city, has purchased an insurance policy for protection against potential lawsuits in connection with its airport. While exploring the legal possibility of banning F-35 fighter jets from the Burlington International Airport, city attorney Eileen Blackwood discovered Burlington …

West Virginia Supreme Court Weighs Municipal Liability for Dog Attack Death

The state Supreme Court has been asked to decide whether the Monroe County Commission and a dog warden are responsible for the 2009 death of a man who was attacked by neighborhood dogs. The justices heard arguments last week in …

South Carolina Limits Police Liability for Dog Bites

A new South Carolina law provides police K-9 units some protection in court. Until last month, the state’s strict liability statute for dog bites meant criminal suspects could almost certainly collect a settlement if a police dog bit them, regardless …