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May 2015 Archives

Appellate Court Rules That College of Staten Island was Negligent In Slip and Fall on Snow and Ice

Ari R. Lieberman, an associate Louis Grandelli, P.C., recently won a precedent-setting appeal in Lalla v. State of New York, further expanding a plaintiff's right to recover in slip and fall cases. The plaintiff, Nicole Lalla, slipped and fell due to a snow and ice condition at the College of Staten Island. The evidence submitted at trial demonstrated that the snowfall had stopped during the night prior to the accident and that steps leading to a building had not been cleared of snow and ice. The evidence further showed that Ms. Lalla was left with no alternative cleared route to travel safely to her class. Despite this evidence, at trial, the judge determined that the College of Staten Island was not negligent in the happening of the accident. Mr. Lieberman, submitted the brief to the Appellate Division, Second Department, arguing that the trial court's determination should be reversed as a matter of law. The appellate panel reversed the trial court's determination and found that the College of Staten Island should have removed the snow and ice from the stairway, and were, therefore, negligent. Significantly, the Second Department found that the plaintiff was not negligent at all in the happening of the accident, since she was not provided an alternate safe route. If you or someone you know has been injured in a slip and fall accident, contact Louis Grandelli, P.C.

A Video Never Forgets

It is a well known principle in both civil litigation and criminal law that memories fade causing witness testimonies to be distorted and confused. While an eyewitness may have every intention of being honest, it is often difficult, if not impossible, to recall events with crystal-clear recollection. Accordingly, it is very important to gather physical evidence, such as surveillance footage and photographs, in order to prove a case and be successful in court.
On May 13, 2015, a Manhattan police officer shot David Baril, a hammer-wielding man that was attempting to attack a fellow officer. As reported by the New York Times, two witnesses came forward with contradicting statements as to the events that took place. One witness, Anthony O'Grady, told reporters that a man was fleeing from the police when he was shot, and another witness, Sunny Khalsa, reported that the man handcuffed at the time the police shot him.
However, the surveillance footage proved both Mr. O'Grady and Ms. Khalsa wrong. Mr. Baril was neither handcuffed nor fleeing at the time he was shot; he was attempting to attack a police officer by swinging a hammer when he was shot by a fellow officer.

Amtrak Derailment Results in Death of 8 and Hundreds of Injuries

On May 13, 2015, an Amtrak train carrying 243 passengers heading Northbound to New York derailed, killing at least eight, and injuring many more. While the cause of the crash has yet to be determined, recent reports have indicated that the train was traveling over 100 miles per hour, on a curve with a speed limit of 55 mph, at the time of the accident.

Staten Island Speed Limits Following DeBlasio's Vision Zero Initiation

In November 2014, New York City lowered its general speed limit to 25 miles per hour. This change went into effect for all five boroughs, but excludes certain larger, more trafficked Roads. Below is a list of the Roads on Staten Island where the speed limits will be over the general 25 miles per hour:

Pitfalls of Social Media In A Personal Injury Litigation

To no ones surprise, the impact of social media has reached an all time peak in our current generation. Publicizing your personal life can make you feel connected to a larger community, but such easy, casual connection in an electronic environment can also have its downside. This is especially true in the conduct of personal injury litigation. What may seem an innocuous Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter post may erode the strength of your case and the claims for pain and suffering.