The Little Rock Zoo

.The Little Rock Zoo needs to step up and care for the animals better! Please read the several artciles here with deaths, sickness and a bald chimp!

Friday, October 30, 2009

No Jury Will Hear, in Workmans Compensation Case, Sandra Herold VS Charla Nash ie: Travis The Chimpanzee

Article provided by Williams, Walsh, and O'Connor, LLC
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Good trial lawyers tell compelling stories to juries in the courtroom. But if a court determines the Connecticut Workers' Compensation Division to be the proper legal venue for Charla Nash's story, no jury will hear it. On February 16, 2009, the 55-year-old woman was attacked by a chimpanzee named Travis. The chimp ripped off her face and hands. Now, Nash is blind, eats through a straw, and suffers partial brain damage.

Travis was a 200-pound chimp owned by Nash's employer, Sandra Herold. He turned on Nash when she tried to coax him back inside Herold's home office after he escaped. On the 911 call, there are screams. Travis grunts from exertion in the background. After Travis mauled Nash, the police arrived, and he opened the door to a cruiser. The police shot and killed him as he began to climb inside.

Nash filed a multi-million dollar lawsuit against Herold alleging, among other things, that Herold was negligent and responsible for her injuries. Herold, in turn, filed a workers' compensation claim on Nash's behalf, listing Nash as a full time employee of Desire Me Motors, Herold's towing company. The question is whether coaxing an escaped chimpanzee was part of Nash's job description. If so, the Connecticut Workers' Compensation Division -- not a jury in Stamford Superior Court -- would hear Nash's story.

Tort law seeks to remedy injustices caused by negligence. It provides a means by which the injured may pursue remuneration from responsible parties. If Nash's lawsuit were to remain before the court, a jury would determine whether Herold was negligent for keeping Travis on the premises. The jury would also have an opportunity to award Nash damages for her pain and suffering.

Workers' compensation generally provides for the resolution of claims without regard to negligence. It caps an employer's liability while providing "automatic" compensation for employees injured on the job. Under Connecticut workers' compensation law, Nash's recovery may be limited to a portion of her salary for a set number of weeks and certain limited damages, as defined by statute. Connecticut workers' compensation law does not allow recovery for non-economic damages, such as pain and suffering.

The facts will be determinative. Nash lost her face, both hands, is blind, eats through a straw, and suffered partial brain damage. Can workers' compensation adequately address this? Perhaps -- if chimp duty was Nash's responsibility as a towing company employee.

Article provided by Williams, Walsh, and O'Connor, LLC
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1 comment:

  1. Such a sad story to read about. The injuries suffered by Nash are terrible and in my opinion she should receive necessary compensation.