If a loved one is killed due to the negligence or wrongful act of another person, organization, or entity, you may have strong grounds for a wrongful death claim and should contact a Los Angeles wrongful death attorney as soon as possible to begin preserving evidence and obtaining witness testimony to get the justice your deceased loved one and your family deserves. Wrongful deaths can tear apart a family, leaving a gaping hole where your loved one should be.
Such was the case when a gun battle erupted on a quiet day in the middle of the Silver Lake Trader Joe’s in Los Angeles in July 2018.
On this fateful day, police were in pursuit of suspect Gene Evin Atkins, a man they allege shot two women, including his grandmother, earlier that day. During the chase that followed, the suspect crashed his car into a post in the parking lot of Trader Joe’s. Atkins emerged from the car, exchanging gunfire with police as he entered the store. Innocent bystander Melyda Corado, who worked as an assistant manager for the store, was caught in the crossfire. She later died from her injuries. The bullet that ended her life was fired by a police officer.
Corado’s family filed a claim against the LAPD on October 4, 2018, seeking damages for her wrongful death. The family, through their attorney, alleges police misconduct by LAPD and a coverup surrounding the shooting. The claim alleges that the LAPD used excessive force during the shootout, violated Corado’s civil rights, and failed to provide officers with adequate training. Requests by the family’s attorney for unedited video surveillance and dash and bodycam footage have been unanswered by the LAPD. The department has 45 days to respond to the claim.
Although it isn’t clear the specific damages that Corado’s family seeks in this case, damages in wrongful death claims can be associated with the actual death or the personal loss suffered by the family and other survivors as a result. For example, compensation may be sought for any medical and hospital bills resulting from the incident, funeral and burial costs, and the loss of income the family suffered as a result of the person’s untimely death. The latter may include the potential income and financial support from the deceased or even the value of any household services performed by the deceased. Damages may also include loss of consortium, love, affection, community, and moral support that the family experiences due to losing their loved one.
Time is of the essence when it comes to filing a wrongful death claim. In the state of California, surviving family members have a period of two years following the death of the loved one to file a wrongful death claim. This is known as the statute of limitations, and it is a hard-and-fast date that must be observed for the claim process. If your loved one passed away due to someone else’s negligence, contact the Law Offices of Howard Craig Kornberg to have a Los Angeles personal injury attorney review your case for free and determine the best actionable route for your particular situation.