Decided - The FindLaw Noteworthy Decisions and Settlements Blog

February 2015 Archives

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces has reversed the aggravated assault conviction of former Air Force Tech. Sgt. David J.A. Gutierrez for withholding his HIV diagnosis from sexual partners.

The court cited medical experts who explained there is a 1 in 500 chance of contracting HIV through unprotected heterosexual sex. That's insufficiently likely to inflict grievous bodily harm to support the aggravated assault charge, the court held.

But the court upheld a lesser assault conviction for Gutierrez based on his former sexual partners' not giving informed consent to sexual activity because he hadn't told them about his HIV status.

They say a man who represents himself has a fool for a client. But what about the woman who sues herself?

A Utah woman has filed a lawsuit against herself, claiming that her own negligent driving caused her significant financial and emotional damages. This case is just as convoluted as it sounds, so let's breakdown exactly what's going on here.

An $8.3 million settlement over an inmate's death at a California jail is the largest single civil rights wrongful death settlement in the state's history, lawyers say.

The Alameda County Board of Supervisors and Corizon Health Inc. (which provides jail medical services to the county) have agreed to make substantial inmate care changes and pay $8.3 million to the family of Martin Harrison, who died two days after Santa Rita Jail deputies beat and used a Taser to subdue him, the Bay Area News Group reports.

Part of the settlement mandates that Corizon only staff registered nurses (RNs) at its facilities, as opposed to using licensed vocational nurses (LVNs) as it had done previously. The financial portion of the settlement will go to Harrison's four adult children.

TracFone's $40M Fine for Data Throttling: How to Claim Your Refund

Hot on the heels of FTC and consumer lawsuits against AT&T for "throttling" cell phone data, the FTC has fined discount prepaid cell phone retailer TracFone $40 million over allegations that it throttles "unlimited" data plans.

The $40 million fine will go toward paying refunds to customers who had the bandwidth on their "unlimited" data service slowed by as much as 90 percent when they reached a certain amount of data usage per month.

Which customers are affected, and how can you go about getting a refund?

Toyota to Pay $11M for Design Defect, a Factor in Fatal Crash

Toyota must pay $11 million to the victims of a fatal 2006 crash after a federal jury found that the design of the car contributed to the crash.

Koua Fong Lee was the driver of the 1996 Toyota Camry that slammed into another car at high speed, killing that car's driver, the driver's son, and a 6-year-old passenger who was paralyzed and died a year later.

The suit follows revelations that Toyota suffered problems with sudden acceleration in some vehicles. What are the legal issues involved here?