News

February 5, 2016

Class Action Lawsuit: Apple iPhone ‘Error 53’

We have filed a class action lawsuit against Apple for an issue that, as The Guardian puts it, “will kill your iPhone.”

iPhone 6 and 6 Plus Models Affected

As far as we know, the problem affects iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus models that have been repaired by a third party.  The iPhone detects that new parts have been installed, and when upgraded to iOS 9, the mysteriously aggravating “Error 53” prevents the phone from functioning.  Worse than having a bricked phone, however, is that unless end-users have an up-to-date backup of their data, all of the documents, apps, and photos are gone.  Our research indicates that there is no way for anyone to recover what is lost in the process.

What Does “Error 53” Mean?

Unfortunately, if you’re seeing “Error 53” on your iPhone 6 or 6 Plus, it may mean that your phone is “bricked.”  As one iPhone repair shop owner puts it [NSFW language in the video], you could walk up to the Genius Bar with $1,000,000 and not get your data back.

What’s Behind “Error 53”?

We hope to find out why Apple implements a policy where end users aren’t free to choose someone other than Apple to repair their devices.  We believe that Apple may be intentionally forcing users to use their repair services, which cost much more than most third party repair shops.  Where you could get your screen replaced by a neighborhood repair facility for $50-80, Apple charges $129 or more.  There is incentive for Apple to keep end users from finding alternative methods to fix their products.

Think of it this way: Let’s say you bought a car, and had your alternator replaced by a local mechanic.  Under Apple’s strategy, your car would no longer start because you didn’t bring it to an official dealership.  They intentionally disable your car because you tried to fix it yourself.

That is wrong, and we hope to prove that it violates various consumer protection laws in the United States.

If you have encountered “Error 53” with your iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, or a newer iPhone device, we’d like to hear from you.  There is no cost to contact us and we only get paid if we win.

If you still have your phone, right now, we recommend you keep it.  Also keep any written information from Apple or any quotes/receipts you may have related to the repair.

Contact us about the Apple Error 53 Issue today

January 28, 2016

Department of Corrections’ Releasing Prisoners Early

Victims of violent crimes may have a case against the Washington Department of Corrections in a civil lawsuit if the perpetrator was released from prison early due to the infamous software made public in December 2015. We believe that we can hold the State of Washington accountable for their negligence in letting violent criminals out of prison before they served their due time. If you or a loved one was harmed by one of the prisoners released early by DOC due to the software glitch, we urge you to contact us today and find out if you can bring a civil suit for money damages against the State.

History of “the Glitch”

A software glitch erroneously increased the amount of “good behavior” time credit applied to more than 3,000 inmates, resulting in them being released before they’d served their full sentence. The glitch dates back to 2002, and was first discovered over 3 years ago, in 2012. The State knew about the glitch and yet delayed fixing the code at least 16 times.

Who does this affect?

We believe this error may affect dozens of crime victims in Washington. We are asking for victims and their families to contact us to find out more. The Department of Corrections has released the names of inmates released early. So far, we know of 21 prisoners who committed crimes during their “early release period;” their names and crimes are listed below.

Name (Last, First)Original ReleaseAdjusted DateCrimeCountyDOC Number
YORK, JIMMIE EARL6/6/20157/26/2015HarassmentKing813713
BENNETT, JOHN LEWIS8/31/201512/13/2015Assault 2, Assault 2Pierce299247
WRIGHT, ORLANDO DEVON11/6/20121/21/2013Robbery 1King897406
HOWELL, ZACHARY JOSEPH1/30/20124/17/2012Assault 2Pierce878785
BUSTAMANTE,ADRIAN9/11/201410/16/2014Assault 2Pierce737155
MCHENRY, MONTIAE3/7/20127/16/2012Assault 2Pierce722586
MANNAN, JEROME BASIM12/20/20127/30/2013Robbery 1Snohomish289007
SPENCER, CRUZ JAMES8/24/201510/26/2015Assault 2Benton345077
STILLGESS, VINCENT RAYMOND9/8/201411/12/2014Assault 2Pierce782557
BENALLY, COLBY7/25/201312/3/2013Robbery 2King332666
SIMMS, CHRISTOPHER EUGENE9/29/20151/15/2016Robbery 1Pierce330455
SUTTON, CHARLES LEE8/3/20148/18/2014Assault 2Pierce364217
BORREGO, JOHNNY CONTRERAS3/29/20136/8/2013Assault 2, Robbery 2Benton329731
MEIER, DANIEL M8/26/20129/22/2012RiotSpokane337967
SAGE, PATRICK RYAN8/25/201410/31/2014Robbery 2King372499
MOEURN, LAURA BAKER5/16/20125/31/2012Assault 2Grays Harbor346192
SMITH, WILLIAM AARON3/12/20154/25/2015Assault 2Yakima896059
PARADA, FRANKLIN MOISES1/15/20153/19/2015Assault 3Benton370813
SMITH, THOMAS G4/8/20148/18/2014Assault 2King762855
STEPHENS, MICHAEL W3/18/20144/27/2014Robbery 2Spokane370177
CHASSAIGNE, DEBRA EVON11/25/201312/20/2013Residential BurglaryClark361204
KREWSON, JOSEPH SOLOMON10/21/201312/14/2013Assault 2Snohomish835112
MCCALPINE, MAURICE BENJAMIN7/23/20129/16/2012Robbery 1Pierce326923
HALL, JUNAID RAMSEY6/19/201211/9/2012Burglary 1Pierce310369
LOUIS, JAMES LEO2/13/20126/7/2012Robbery 1King749880
SANCHEZ, JESUS GUADALUPE10/13/20155/23/2016Assault 2Skagit835607
MIHALCE, MIHAI ROMULUS12/15/20145/23/2015Burglary 1King754564
HEPPER, ROBERT O10/24/20144/6/2015Burglary 1Spokane331017
OLIVER, MARTRE TIRIK9/8/20141/2/2015Assault 2Pierce373111
ERICKSON, COLHANE KEITH11/26/20131/16/2014Assault 3Whatcom328141
ELLIS, CAMERON8/15/20131/28/2014Assault 2King353696
JACKSON, VICTORIA ROBIN10/5/201510/30/2015Assault 1King300789
FISCHER, THEOFELE8/26/201510/24/2015Robbery 2King332207
WILLIAMS, THOMAS ANDREW3/9/20154/29/2015Assault 3King329046
ALLEN, MARCOS ALOYSIUS1/20/20153/28/2015Robbery 1Pierce305121
WILLIAMS, TRAVIS MICHAEL6/17/20139/17/2013Robbery 2, Assault 2Pierce349627
WILLIAMS, KEITH THOMAS11/9/20152/23/2016Assault 2King361577
MISKELLY, CHRISTOPHER9/16/20151/8/2016Burglary 1Snohomish333283
MORRIS, DANIEL DEAN8/3/201511/26/2015Assault 2Pierce862786
DIAZ, ALFREDO LEONELL SILVA7/6/20157/31/2015Assault 3Grant357627
BLINDHEIM, BRIAN EUGENE10/22/201212/16/2012Assault 2Snohomish882335
CANTU, ABEL11/30/20152/22/2016DrugsSkagit341041
ROBERTS, BRANDON J11/30/20151/19/2016Assault 3Grays Harbor377555
TOWERY, CURTIS DAVID11/30/20152/17/2016Burglary 1Pierce873661
KLUTH, CHAD NICHOLAS11/23/20151/22/2016Robbery 1Snohomish349421
PAGEL, SHANE ANTHONY11/17/20151/16/2016Assault 3Thurston278878
PAIGE, TERRANCE ANTHONIA11/12/20152/6/2016Assault 2King348867
SIMS, JOSEPH FOREST11/4/20151/16/2016Assault 2King322406
BENNINGER, NATHAN NEIL11/2/20154/25/2016Assault 2Stevens313831
JODICE, ROBERT MICHAEL10/27/20152/16/2016Assault 2Snohomish764084
TAYLOR, JOHN TRAVIS10/16/20152/10/2016Robbery 1Clark363037
CHISSUS, TODD ROBERT9/28/20151/10/2016Burglary 1Lewis701170
MOORE, JOSHUA RAY9/27/20151/6/2016Assault 2King381812
GATLIN, ADRIAN JONATHAN9/17/20151/27/2016Residential BurglaryYakima363794
YOUNG, FLOYD9/16/20154/2/2016Assault 2Benton789739
STERLING, VINCENT E9/9/20152/24/2016Robbery 1Pierce334590
SILVERA, MICHEIL ANTHONY8/19/20151/8/2016Burglary 1Pierce805410
JENNINGS, DAVID BRIAN8/10/20153/10/2016Assault 2Pierce821357
REID, JAMES ERIN3/16/20151/10/2017Assault 2Pierce899437
DELGADO, JOSEPH MICHAEL11/3/20151/29/2016Assault 2Whatcom369954
FONG, MICHAEL JOSEPH10/9/20152/16/2016Burglary 1, Assault 2Pierce899782
MCCRACKEN, CHASE BRENDON9/28/20152/21/2016Residential BurglarySkamania378196
PATTERSON, RACHEL ROSE MARIE9/28/20153/26/2016Assault 2Snohomish379448
DAVIS, BOBBY DUANE12/10/20151/31/2016Burglary 1Skagit359354
WILLIAMS, EUGENE12/7/20151/22/2016Assault 2King376600
ADAMS, JESSE DONNELLY12/7/20152/9/2016Assault 2Snohomish873866
KLATT, CURTIS ALLEN9/10/201510/14/2015Assault 2King380790
NGUYEN, NGOC VUANH2/18/20154/21/2015Assault 3Whatcom736166
IMAN, PAUL ALLAN12/15/20152/9/2016Robbery 1Pierce341496
ACEVEDO, EDUARDO12/8/20152/24/2016Robbery 2Yakima377317
OSTER, GARY THOMAS12/2/201512/23/2015Robbery 1Snohomish274154
SERGIENKO, KONSTANTIN A10/26/20151/6/2016Unlawful ImprisonmentSpokane382021
PUA, AIGALELEI10/5/201511/28/2015Assault 2King350036
HALL, BOBBY LARELLE8/17/20159/18/2015Assault 3King306373
JACKSON, ROBERT TERRANCE8/10/201512/6/2015Robbery 2King771716
IBARRA, STEVE7/27/201510/29/2015Assault 2Whatcom363397
SMITH, JEREMIAH A5/14/20158/10/2015Robbery 1Spokane317655
CROW, BRYAN JACK ROSS4/28/20155/8/2015Assault 2Yakima372580
JIM, MARCUS ERIC4/7/20156/23/2015Assault 3King890402
HICKEY, RYAN LEE1/26/20152/23/2015Assault 2King810131
BACANI, JUSTIN MATTHEW10/14/201411/29/2014Assault 2King804802
BERCIER, DUNCAN L9/24/201411/7/2014Assault 2Snohomish889108
ROJAS, GERALDO6/10/20149/3/2014Assault 2King357444
BLACK, TERRY LEE12/3/20133/20/2014Assault 2King336429
MAGER, JUSTIN JEFFREY8/19/201312/7/2013Robbery 1Spokane892037
WRIGHT, DARREN MICHAEL1/23/20134/11/2013Assault 3Yakima324208
JOHANSEN, MATTHEW JACOB8/27/20129/25/2012Possession of Controlled SubstanceClark766798

Additional Information

The Department of Corrections has provided information on their website about the Sentencing Error: http://www.doc.wa.gov/news/pressreleases/2015/12222015-sentencing-error-information.asp

Below are links to various news stories covering this topic:

January 20, 2016

Chipotle Class Action – Shareholder Derivative Lawsuit

Pfau Cochran Vertetis Amala PLLC is investigating a filing of a shareholder derivative class action lawsuit against Chipotle Mexican Grill, Inc. (NYSE: CMG).  PCVA Law contends that Chipotle may have issued materially misleading business information to the investing public that ultimately harmed your financial position.

Chipotle Stock Price Drop

If you purchased or owned stock in Chipotle Mexican Grill, Inc., between February 2015 and January 2016, we want to hear from you.  To join this investigation and the potential class action lawsuit please contact Steve Lindell toll free at 1-800-349-7282.

No Class has been certified in this action.  You must retain an attorney to be represented in this matter.

PCVA Law is currently an integral part of the Premera Class Action lawsuits (www.PremeraLawsuit.com ), and the Volkswagen emissions scandal class action. (www.volkswagenfraudlawsuit.com)

Take action.  Call today.  We look forward to speaking with you.

Chipotle Shareholder Derivative Lawsuit

PHOTO: REUTERS/ANDREW KELLY

 

January 19, 2016

Accident victim files suit against Grays Harbor Community Hospital

The victim of a bus accident in Montesano in 2013 has filed a lawsuit against Grays Harbor Community Hospital and several individuals associated with a collections company over the use of medical liens to recover costs associated with treating her. And her attorneys have asked for “class action” status, meaning people in similar circumstances could join the suit.

The case, filed in Grays Harbor Superior Court on Tuesday, focuses on the practices of California-based collections company Hunter Donaldson, which was recently at the center of a legal battle involving Multicare Health System, based in Tacoma.

In the Multicare suit, Hunter Donaldson was accused of improperly filing medical liens, using a notary public who was improperly certified in the state of Washington. In addition, a Multicare executive was accused of helping the Hunter Donaldson employee fraudulently obtain notary certification in the state, even though she lived and worked in California. Liens, which must be filed with the county, are required to be notarized.

After a legal battle that lasted well over a year, Multicare agreed to settle the class-action suit for $7.5 million in late 2014, but admitted no wrongdoing. During the legal battle with Multicare, Hunter Donaldson filed for bankruptcy protection. More than 4,000 patients were potentially eligible to benefit from the settlement in that case, according to the law firm that represented the plaintiffs.

The Tacoma News Tribune reported that the executive accused in the suit left Multicare, and the state rescinded the Hunter Donaldson employee’s notary certification.

Grays Harbor Community Hospital formed an “affiliation network” with Multicare in mid-2013, around the same time the case against Hunter Donaldson and Multicare began.

The most recent lawsuit accuses Hunter Donaldson and Grays Harbor Community Hospital of the same improper actions regarding medical liens. In fact, the same woman whose notary certification was rescinded during the Multicare lawsuit is also named as a defendant in the Grays Harbor lawsuit. The Grays Harbor complaint also requests class action status.

If granted, that could mean any patient subjected to a medical lien filed by agents of Hunter Donaldson in Grays Harbor County could become a party to the suit, according to Darrell Cochran, managing partner at Pfau Cochran Vertetis Amala PLLC and lead council representing the accident victim in this case, Mary Bryan.

Through medical liens, state law allows medical providers to seek up to 25 percent of insurance settlements paid to accident victims to cover the cost of their services. For providers, the alternative is to bill medical insurance companies that, through agreements with providers, may pay less than 100 percent of the bill.

Up until the last few years, the medical lien process had mostly been used by “medical professionals on the periphery,” Cochran told The Daily World on Thursday.

He asserted that, for larger hospitals, “the liens have been used in the last couple of years to increase profits.”

“They can dodge the health insurance and get, instead of a 60 or 50 percent reimbursement (on medical services costs), they can get more like 100 percent reimbursement from a crash victim’s settlement,” he said.

Grays Harbor Community Hospital CEO Tom Jensen had not seen the lawsuit as of Friday morning, but said that the hospital began using Hunter Donaldson about six years ago under former CEO John Mitchell.

“We had an audit review done by Multicare in 2009,” Jensen said. “One of their recommendations was to use Hunter Donaldson.”

Mitchell signed a contract with Hunter Donaldson in November of that year, Jensen said.

“They said, ‘This has been a benefit to us as an organization, and it’s not against the law, and this is what we are doing,” he said.

Jensen said the hospital stopped sending patient accounts to Hunter Donaldson sometime in mid-2015, due to the company’s bankruptcy.

As for the practice of using medical liens in accident cases, Jensen pointed out that the use of medical liens themselves wasn’t the issue.

“I believe that it’s not against the law … it was how they were doing it (that was the problem),” he said referring to the Multicare lawsuit.

In Bryan’s case, she was treated at Grays Harbor Community Hospital after being hit by a school bus in Montesano in December of 2013, but, instead of billing her medical insurance, the lawsuit alleges the hospital turned her case over to Hunter Donaldson to file a medical lien to try to recoup its costs through her settlement from the Montesano School District’s insurance carrier.

In his client’s case, the law could potentially allow Grays Harbor and Hunter Donaldson to collect up to about $275,000 from Bryan, depending on her total medical bills. She settled with the Montesano School District’s insurance carrier for $1.1 million in August of 2015.

But, the lawsuit calls into question the legality of liens filed by Hunter Donaldson in Grays Harbor County, citing the same shortcomings as in the Multicare lawsuit.

Cochran was also the lead attorney in the Multicare case.

The lawsuit further calls into question the notary licenses of several Hunter Donaldson employees, including the one named in the previous lawsuit, and the company’s status as a legal claimant under state law, potentially making all liens it filed “invalid and fraudulent.” The lawsuit also claims Hunter Donaldson aggressively went after payment from patients using the liens as leverage.

In a press release, Cochran chastised the hospital for not heeding the Multicare lawsuit.

“Grays Harbor should have investigated its relationship with Hunter Donaldson right then and there and taken steps to protect its patients,” he wrote.

– See more at: http://thedailyworld.com/news/local-business/accident-victim-files-suit-against-grays-harbor-community-hospital

January 15, 2016

Seattle Archdiocese Publishes List of 77 Individuals Subject to Allegations of Child Abuse

(Seattle) — For the first time, the Seattle Archdiocese has published a comprehensive list of priests and other religious individuals who have served in the Archdiocese and have been the subject of allegations of child sexual abuse. The list includes each individual’s name, their assignments within the Archdiocese, and their dates of service. 77 individuals are named.

The list states that it is a “list of clergy and religious brothers and sisters for whom allegations of sexual abuse of a minor have been admitted, established or determined to be credible,” and that each person on the list has “either served or resided in the Archdiocese of Seattle.”

Priest Child Sexual Abuse in Church

The list includes 30 Archdiocesan priests, 16 religious priests, 14 priests from other Dioceses, 15 religious brothers and sisters, and 2 Archdiocesan deacons.

Seattle attorney Michael T. Pfau and his law partner, Jason P. Amala, have settled more than 150 claims against the Seattle Archdiocese and others that operated its schools and parishes in the Seattle area. Many of the claims involved people identified in the list released today.

According to Pfau, the list will help abuse survivors address their abuse: “Many of our clients believe they were the only one, or they think they will not be believed if they come forward. This list will help people realize they are not alone, which is often the first step toward healing and closure.”

While Pfau believes publication of the list is a long overdue step, he urges the Archdiocese to go further and to release the files it maintains on the named individuals: “I am encouraged by today’s news, but this is only the first step. For true transparency, the Seattle Archdiocese should release the files it has long maintained on many of these individuals, including the secret archives that were kept exclusively by the Archbishop and his closest advisors. We have seen this happen in other Archdioceses. Releasing the files allows abuse survivors to begin to understand how it happened, which can be another important step toward finding closure. It also helps the general public to understand the magnitude of the problem, and to ensure this never happens again.”

Browse or search the list of priests below

Priest NamePosition in the ChurchAssignments
Albrechtson, DennisArchdiocesan DeaconSt. Anthony’s, Renton (1989)
Ashwell, BarryArchdiocesan PriestSt. Thomas Seminary, Kenmore (1963-1969) Sacred Heart, Bellevue (1969-1970)
St. Pius X, Mountlake Terrace (1970-1971)
Our Lady Star of the Sea, Bremerton (1971-1975) St. Joseph, Vancouver (1975-1976)
St. Vincent de Paul, Federal Way (1976-1978) St. Augustine, Oak Harbor (1978-2000)
Axer, Engelbert SJReligious PriestSeattle University, Seattle (1943-1946)
Seattle Preparatory School, Seattle (1943-1946) Seattle University, Seattle (1956-1978)
Our Lady of the Lake, Seattle (1975)
Beaver, Reinart (Diocese of Spokane)Priest from Other DicoeseFort Lewis Chaplain's Office (1976-1980) Madigan General Hospital, Tacoma (1981-1983)
Blanco, Mario (Diocese of Puerto Rico and Diocese of Sacramento)Priest from Other DicoeseNone Known; Served at a traditionalist Latin Church in Tacoma (mid-1980s-2000s)
Boulden, Gary (Diocese of Spokane)Priest from Other DicoeseNone Known; Occasional ministry at Immaculate Conception, Seattle, and St. John, Seattle (1992)
Boyle, EdmundArchdiocesan PriestSt. James Cathedral, Seattle (1955-1964) Out of Archdiocese (1964-1979)
Mt. St. Vincent, Seattle (1979-1984)
Boyle, EdwardArchdiocesan PriestSt. Edward’s Seminary, Kenmore (1940-1950) St. Rose, Longview (1950-1956)
Immaculate Conception, Everett (1956-1958) Immaculate Conception, Arlington (1958-1965) Immaculate Heart of Mary, Sedro Woolley (1965-1968)
Holy Trinity, Bremerton (1968-1976)
St. Stephen the Martyr, Renton (1976-1980) St. John, Seattle (1980-1985)
St. John’s Hospital, Longview (1985-1986) Sacred Heart, Bellevue (1986 –1987)
Brouilette, Robert CFCReligious BrotherO’Dea High School, Seattle (1968-1970)
Calhoun, Dale aka Ernest (Diocese of Yakima)Priest from Other DicoeseArchdiocese of Seattle Tribunal (1987-1988) St. Anne, Seattle (1988)
Casale, Albert CFCReligious BrotherBriscoe Memorial School, Kent (1956-1960; 1962-1969)
Champagne, DennisArchdiocesan PriestSt. Edward’s Seminary, Kenmore (1961-1965) St. Thomas Seminary, Kenmore (1965-1971) St. Francis, Seahurst (1971-1973)
St. John, Seattle (1973-1976) St. Patrick, Tacoma (1976-1979)
St. Michael, Snohomish (1979-1999) St. John Bosco, Lakewood (1999-2002)
Cody, MichaelArchdiocesan PriestSt. Edward’s Seminary, Kenmore (1953-1958) St. Luke, Shoreline (1958-1961)
Holy Family, Seattle (1961-1962) Out of Archdiocese (1962-1963)
St. James Cathedral, Seattle (1963-1967) Holy Family, Auburn (1967-1968)
Sacred Heart, La Conner (1968-1970) St. Charles, Burlington (1970-1972) Assumption, Bellingham (1972-1975)
St. Margaret, Seattle (in residence) (1975-1979)
Conn, PaulArchdiocesan PriestQueen of Angels, Port Angeles (1985-1988)
Cornelius, JohnArchdiocesan PriestSt. Thomas Seminary, Kenmore (1971-1975) St. Therese, Seattle (1975)
St. Mary, Seattle (1975-1978)
Immaculate Conception, Seattle (1978-1996) Immaculate Conception & Our Lady of Perpetual Help, Everett (1997-2002)
Coughlin, John SJReligious PriestSeattle Preparatory School, Seattle (1952-1957) Bellarmine Preparatory School, Tacoma (1964-1965)
Courtney, Edward CFCReligious BrotherO’Dea High School, Seattle (1974-1978) Our Lady of the Lake, Seattle (1978-1979) St. Alphonsus, West Seattle (1979-1980)
Croke, Patrick CFCReligious BrotherBriscoe Memorial School, Kent (1951-1970)
Crosby, Sr. Dolores SNJMReligious SisterSt. Anne School, Seattle (1968-1970)
Holy Rosary School, Edmonds (1973-1978)
St. Frances Cabrini School, Tacoma (1978-1979) Our Lady of the Lake School, Seattle (1979-1992)
Immaculate Conception School, Everett (1992-1999)
Delamere, Frank CFCReligious BrotherBriscoe Memorial School, Kent (1963-1968)
Donahue, William CFCReligious BrotherBriscoe Memorial School, Kent (1924-1932; 1937-1946;
1961-1970)
Dooley, JeromeArchdiocesan PriestSt. Edward’s Seminary, Kenmore (1952-1956) Christ the King, Seattle (1956-1957)
St. Francis, Seahurst (1957-1960) St. Rose, Longview (1960-1965) Sacred Heart, Tacoma (1965-1967) Holy Rosary, Seattle (1967-1970)
Immaculate Heart of Mary, Sedro Woolley (1970-1976) Sacred Heart, Bellingham (1976-1981)
St. Bernadette, Seattle (1981-1983)
St. Thomas More, Lynnwood (1983-1986) St. Philomena (1986 – 1993)
Duffy, Patrick CFCReligious BrotherBriscoe Memorial School, Kent (1958-1959)
Dwyer, George CFCReligious BrotherBriscoe Memorial School, Kent (1940s)
Feeney, Leonard OSBReligious PriestSt. Martin's High School/College (1937, 1942-1950)
Fleckenstein, David CMFReligious PriestSt. Louise, Bellevue (1977-1979)
Forrester, John OSB (St. Benedict's Abbey - Atchison, Kansas)Religious PriestSeattle University, Seattle (student) (1971-1973) St. Therese, Seattle (in residence) (1971-1973) St. James Cathedral, Seattle (in residence) (1974) Holy Rosary, Seattle (1974-1975)
All Saints, Puyallup (1975-1978) St. Anthony, Kent (1978)
St. Francis of Assisi, Seahurst (1978-1979)
Foyle, Dermot (Diocese in Ireland)Priest from Other DicoeseAssumption, Bellingham (1952-1953) St. Alphonsus, Seattle (1954)
Sacred Heart, Bellevue (1955-1958) St. Charles Borromeo, Tacoma (1959) St. Michael, Olympia (1960-1964)
St. Mary, Castle Rock (1965-1969)
Gandrau, JamesArchdiocesan PriestSt. James Cathedral, Seattle (1958-1961)
St. James Cathedral, Seattle (in residence) (1961-1965) St. Mark, Seattle (in residence) (1965-1976)
St. Monica, Mercer Island (1977-1990) Sabbatical, Menlo Park, CA (1990)
St. Joseph, Vancouver (1991)
St. Alphonsus, Seattle (1991-2002)
Harris, Bernard SJReligious PriestBellarmine Preparatory School, Tacoma (1949-1952)
Hau, Phan Huu (Diocese of Vietnam)Priest from Other DicoeseHoly Family, Seattle (1978-1988)
Hays, MichaelArchdiocesan PriestHoly Trinity, Bremerton (1976-1980) St. Michael, Olympia (1980-1981)
Immaculate Heart of Mary, Sedro Woolley (1981-1982) Our Lady, Star of the Sea, Bremerton (1982-1984)
St. Charles, Burlington (1984-1985) St. Anne, Seattle (1985-1986)
St. Philomena, Des Moines (1986-1989)
Hewitt, GregoryArchdiocesan DeaconAll Saints, Puyallup (1979-1980)
Jaeger, DavidArchdiocesan PriestSt. Thomas Seminary, Kenmore (1958-1969) St. Hubert, Langley (1968)
Holy Rosary, Edmonds (1968-1969) St. Joseph, Vancouver (1969-1972)
Immaculate Conception, Everett (1972-1975) CYO Director (1975-1978)
Assoc. Dir. of Seminarians, Seattle (1978-1980s) Sacred Heart, Seattle (in residence) (1978-1981) St. Paul, Seattle (in residence) (1981-1988)
St. Therese, Seattle (1988-1989) AIDS Ministry, Seattle (1990-2001)
Jayawardene, Pantaleone (Chilaw Diocese in Sri Lanka)Priest from Other DicoeseNone Known; Resided in Pacific Northwest (1990s)
Johnson, David OFMReligious PriestSt. George, Seattle (1986-1988)
Kealy, Gerard Al CFCReligious BrotherBriscoe Memorial School, Kent (Summer of 1958 & 1959)
O’Dea High School, Seattle (1954-1963; 1977-1980)
Kemp, DennisArchdiocesan PriestSt. Monica, Mercer Island (1973-1976)
Our Lady Star of the Sea, Bremerton (1976-1978)
St. Edward Hall Minor Seminary, Burien (1978-1979) John F. Kennedy High School, Burien (1979-1994) Chancery, Seattle (1990-1994)
St. Mark, Shoreline (1994-2002)
St. Monica, Mercer Island (2002-2007)
Our Lady of Mount Virgin, Seattle (2004-2007)
Knelleken, JamesArchdiocesan PriestSt. Edward’s Seminary, Kenmore (1940-1951) St. Catherine, Seattle (1951-1958)
Immaculate Conception, Raymond (1958-1964) Holy Trinity, Bremerton (1964-1968)
Leave of Absence (1971-1981) Christ the King, Seattle (1981-1984)
Immaculate Conception, Everett (1984-1988)
Lackie, John CFCReligious BrotherBriscoe Memorial School, Kent (1939-1950)
Ladenberger, Louis OFMReligious PriestSt. George, Seattle (1980-1984)
Lamm, Timothy OSBReligious PriestSt. Martin's Abbey/University, Lacey (1955-1981; 1988-
1991)
Ledwith, Miceal, aka Michael (Diocese of Ferns, Ireland)Priest from Other DicoeseNone Known; Resided in Rainier (1994-2000s)
Linehan, DavidArchdiocesan PriestSt. Edward’s Seminary, Kenmore (1956-1958; 1962-
1968; 1970-1972) (as a SS)
St. Alphonsus, Seattle (in residence) (1972-1974) Christ the King, Seattle (in residence) (1974-1975) Our Lady of Lourdes, Vancouver (1975-1977)
St. Charles, Burlington (1977-1984) Chaplain to Boy Scouts (1982-1992) Sacred Heart, Bellingham (1984-1988) St. Bernadette, Seattle (1988)
Chaplain to Deaf Community (1988-1992)
St. Margaret, Seattle (1989-1992) St. Mary, Castle Rock (1992-1995)
Low, LawrenceArchdiocesan PriestSacred Heart, Tacoma (1955-1956) St. Rose, Longview (1956-1960)
St. Francis of Assisi, Seahurst (1960-1965) St. Mary, Seaview (1965-1969)
St. John Vianney, Vashon (1969-1974)
O.L. Lourdes, Seattle (1974-1975) St. Catherine, Seattle (1974-1985)
Immaculate Conception, Arlington (1985-1986) St. Alphonsus, Seattle (1986-1987)
Marmo, TheodoreArchdiocesan PriestSt. Edward’s Seminary, Kenmore (1955-1959) St. Thomas Seminary, Kenmore (1959-1965) Immaculate Conception, Everett (1965-1969)
J.F. Kennedy High School (1969-1978)
St. Francis, Seahurst (in residence) (1969-1972)
St. Vincent de Paul, Federal Way (in residence) (1972- 1976)
St. Edward Hall, Seattle (1976-1979) St. Michael, Olympia (1979-1985)
St. John Vianney, Kenmore (1985-1992)
Marsh, JohnArchdiocesan PriestSt. Edward’s Seminary, Kenmore (1951-1958) St. Catherine, Seattle (1958-1960)
St. Teresa, Seattle (1960-1964) St. Matthew, Seattle (1964-1968) St. Anthony, Renton (1968-1970) St. Thomas, Camas (1970-1971)
St. Madeleine Sophie, Bellevue (1971-1972) Sick Leave (1972-1976)
St. Francis, Friday Harbor (1976-1978) St. Paul, Seattle (1978-1980)
St. Mary’s Provincialate, Bellevue (in residence) (1980- 1984)
Ministry to Alcoholics (1980-1985) St. Mary, Castle Rock (1985-1986) St. Bernadette, Seattle (1987)
St. Bridget, Seattle (in residence) (1987)
McGreal, JamesArchdiocesan PriestSt. Edward’s Seminary, Kenmore (1943-1948) St. Patrick, Tacoma (1948-1950)
St. James, Vancouver (1950-1954) Holy Rosary, Seattle (1954-1956) St. Mary, Monroe (1956-1966)
St. Michael, Olympia (1966-1971) St. Catherine, Seattle (1971-1977) St. Anthony, Renton (1977-1980)
St. Joseph Hospital, Tacoma (1980-1981)
St. John Bosco, Tacoma (in residence) (1980-1981) Providence Hospital, Everett (1981-1985)
Queen of Angels, Port Angeles (1986-1987) St. Theresa, Federal Way (1987-1988)
McMahon, DesmondArchdiocesan PriestSt. Bernadette, Seattle (1960-1967) St. Catherine, Seattle (1967-1971) St. Mary, Monroe (1971-1973)
Star of the Sea, Port Townsend (1973-1985) Holy Cross, Tacoma (1985-1986)
Medical Leave (1986-1987)
Holy Family, Seattle (1987-1988) St. Mark, Seattle (1988-1989)
All Saints, Puyallup (1989-1990)
McManus, John SSReligious PriestSt. John Vianney, Kenmore (1980-1983)
McSorley, James OMIReligious PriestSt. Edward’s Seminary, Kenmore (1949-1954; 1959-1968)
St. Mary, Aberdeen (1982)
St. Thomas Center, Bothell (1984-1986)
Mitchell, James (Sorocco Diocese in Colombia)Priest from Other DicoeseSt. John the Evangelist, Vancouver (1985-1986)
Moffat, GeraldArchdiocesan PriestSt. Edward’s Seminary, Kenmore (1944-1956) St. James Cathedral, Seattle (1956-1960)
St. Margaret, Seattle (in residence) (1960-1961) St. Alphonsus, Seattle (in residence) (1961-1964) Holy Names Academy, Seattle (1964-1968)
St. Francis, Friday Harbor (1968-1970) St. Paul, Seattle (1970-1972)
Holy Family, Kirkland (1972-1975)
Our Lady of the Lake, Seattle (1975-1977) Holy Rosary, Seattle (1977-1980)
Our Lady of Sorrows, Snoqualmie (1980-1992) St. Hubert, Langley (1992-2002)
Morin, Gerald SJReligious PriestSt. Leo, Tacoma (1952-1983)
Bellarmine Preparatory School, Tacoma (1984-1991)
Muehe, DennisArchdiocesan PriestSt. Edward’s Seminary, Kenmore (1942-1954) Cathedral, Seattle (1954-1955)
Providence Hospital, Seattle (1955)
Immaculate Conception, Seattle (in residence) (1955) Catholic University of America, Seattle (1955-1957) St. Anne, Seattle (in residence) (1957-1974)
Our Lady of Fatima, Seattle (in residence) (1974-1977) St. Anne, Seattle (in residence) (1977-1978)
St. Bridget, Seattle (1978-1989)
OBrien, Michael C.Archdiocesan PriestOur Lady of Lourdes, Vancouver (1965-1970) St Ann, Tacoma (1970-1973)
St. James Cathedral, Seattle (1973-1974) St. Michael, Snohomish (1974-1979)
St. John, Vancouver (1979-1999)
St. Mary of the Valley, Monroe (1999-2008)
Ocana, Manuel C. (Diocese in Philippines)Priest from Other DicoeseSt. Joseph Residence (Sisters of Providence) (1998-1999) Providence Medical Center, Seattle (1998-1999)
Holy Family, Seattle (1998-1999)
O’'Sullivan, Vincent CFCReligious BrotherBriscoe Memorial School, Kent (1940-1950)
O’Brien, WilliamArchdiocesan PriestSt. Alphonsus, Seattle (1925-1929) Immaculate Conception, Seattle (1930-1936) St. Joseph, Ferndale (1936-1949)
All Saints, Puyallup (1949-1970)
O’Donnell, Patrick (Diocese of Spokane)Priest from Other DicoeseSt. Paul, Seattle (1977-1978)
Pitsch, ThomasArchdiocesan PriestSt. Edward’s Seminary, Kenmore (1937-1941) St. Paul, Yakima (1941)
St. James Cathedral, Seattle (1941-1943) St. Paul, Yakima (1943-1950)
St. Philip, Woodland (1950-1952) St. Joseph, Vancouver (1952-1964) St. Patrick, Tacoma (1964-1971) St. John, Seattle (1971-1976)
St. Margaret, Seattle (1976-1978)
Pommier, James (Diocese of Bismarck)Priest from Other DicoesePeriodic Ministry, Olympic Peninsula area including St. Gabriel, Port Orchard (1979-1985)
Poole, James SJReligious PriestBellarmine Preparatory School, Tacoma (1990-2003)
Quick, WilliamArchdiocesan PriestSt. James Cathedral, Seattle (1934-1939)
Our Lady Star of Sea, Bremerton (1939-1940) All Saints, Puyallup (1940-1942)
St. Martin, Fife (1942-1952)
Immaculate Conception, Mt. Vernon (1952-1956) St. Francis, Seahurst (1956-1968)
Quigg, HaroldArchdiocesan PriestSt. Mary Magdalen, Everett (1960-1966) Holy Family, Kirkland (1966-1968)
St. James Cathedral, Seattle (1968-1972)
St. Vincent de Paul, Federal Way (1972-1981) Sacred Heart, Bellevue (1981-1988)
St. Anthony, Renton (1988-1989) St. Bridget, Seattle (1989-2001)
Racine, LeoArchdiocesan PriestSt. Monica, Mercer Island (1979-1982)
St. Stephen the Martyr, Renton (1982-1984) St. Joseph, Chehalis (1984-1985)
St. Alphonsus, Seattle (1985-1986) Holy Family, Seattle (1986-1987) St. Luke, Seattle (1987-1988)
Renggli, Robert OSBReligious PriestSt. Martin's Abbey, Lacey (1971-1976)
Ryan, C.P. CFCReligious BrotherBriscoe Memorial School, Kent (1956-1962; 1965-1968)
Ryan, D.P. CFCReligious BrotherBriscoe Memorial School, Kent (1949-1956)
Scully, Richard (Diocese of Yakima, Diocese of Amarillo)Priest from Other DicoeseStudent at Sulpician Seminary of the Northwest (1964- 1966; 1971-1973)
Silva, George (Archdiocese of Santa Fe)Priest from Other DicoeseO’Dea High School, Seattle (as a CFC) (1991-1994)
Slane, Anthony CSsRReligious PriestOur Lady of Good Help, Hoquiam (1982-1987) Sacred Heart, Seattle (1988-2002)
Stohr, RichardArchdiocesan PriestSt. Edward’s Seminary, Kenmore (1940-1947) St. Mary’s, Seattle (1947-1950)
St. Margaret, Seattle (1950-1960) CYO Director (1950-1960)
Our Lady of Guadalupe, Seattle (1960-1964) On Leave (1964-1970)
Our Lady of Good Help, Hoquiam (1970-1973) St. Anne, Seattle (1973-1976)
St. John, Vancouver (1976-1979)
Washington State Reformatory, Monroe (1979-1988) Holy Innocents Mission, Duvall (1979-1988)
Jail & Prison Ministry (1981-1988)
Toner, JamesArchdiocesan PriestVancouver Missions, Vancouver (early 1920s) Blanchet Home, Vancouver (1923-1925)
St. James Cathedral, Seattle (1925-1926) St. Joseph’s, Pe Ell (1926-1938) Marymount, Tacoma (1938-1944)
St. Nicolas, Gig Harbor (1944)
St. Joseph’s Hospital, Tacoma (1945-1946) Briscoe Memorial School, Kent (1946-1950) St. Joseph’s Hospital, Tacoma (1950)
Toulouse, Michael SJReligious PriestBellarmine Preparatory School, Tacoma (1939) Seattle University, Seattle (1952-1976)
Trippy, StephenArchdiocesan PriestSt. Patrick, Tacoma (1976-1978)
St. Vincent de Paul, Federal Way (1978-1979) Holy Family, Kirkland (1979-1982)
Immaculate Heart of Mary, Sedro-Woolley (1982-1988) Sacred Heart, Bellevue (1988)
Warren, James CFCReligious BrotherBriscoe Memorial School, Kent (1931-1944)
October 2, 2015

Coach Sexual Abuse Case Featured by KING 5 and the Olympian

OLYMPIA, Wash. — For five years, Brittany kept her relationship with her soccer coach a secret.

Back in 2009, David E. Cross was a well respected coach with the premier level Blackhills Football Club in Olympia. He coached the top teenage female players and was tough on them.

“I just looked up to him immensely,” Brittany said. “I didn’t have someone that was involved in sports that I could look up to. He was a big mentor for me.”

KING 5 agreed not to disclose Brittany’s last name because of the alleged abuse she suffered as a minor.

Brittany said he started singling her out when she was 15.

“He started asking what I had done with other people my age, sexually,” she said. “And he wanted to know details about what happened, and it just started progressing from there.”

Read the rest of the story and watch the video on KING 5’s website by clicking here: http://www.king5.com/story/news/local/2015/10/01/black-hills-fc-david-cross-premier-soccer-lawsuit/73178578/

Read the story on the Olympian by clicking here: http://www.theolympian.com/news/local/crime/article37240515.html

September 21, 2015

Lawsuit Accuses Youth Soccer Coach of Sexually Abusing Former Player

A former Thurston County woman has filed and served a lawsuit that accuses a youth soccer coach of sexually exploiting her, eventually engaging her in sexual intercourse, when she was a 17 year-old player.  The woman, identified only by the initials B.W., alleges that former St. Martin’s University Men’s Soccer and Black Hills Football Club Coach David E. Cross began grooming her at age 13 and ultimately engaged in sex acts with the then-minor player multiple times, including before soccer try-outs and on trips with the team.  The lawsuit names the youth league B.W. played in, Black Hills Football Club, as well as Cross and his wife, as defendants.

The suit, filed by Tacoma attorneys Darrell Cochran and Kevin Hastings on behalf of B.W., states that B.W. was a member of the Black Hills Football Club’s “A” team coached by Cross.  Cross occasionally texted his favorite soccer players, but by January 2009, Cross was texting B.W. frequently.  The texts started as mentoring messages but moved to personal questions about B.W.’s sexual experience with boys.  Texting then turned into in-person encounters and culminated in sexual intercourse.

“Cross’s behavior is textbook grooming,” Cochran said.  “A perpetrator with a position of power who secretly and systematically showers someone under his or her control with more and more attention.  At some point he knew he had enough power over B.W. that he could move the relationship beyond the bounds of coach-and-player,” said Cochran.

Cross had intercourse with B.W. multiple times at various locations around Thurston County and on trips out-of-town with the soccer team, including Disneyland, according to the lawsuit.  The suit also alleges that Cross took pictures of himself having sex with the then-17 year-old player.

A Lacey Police Department report from February 2010 documents how at one point Cross was discovered by police alone with B.W. after 9 at night in his work van.  When a Lacey Police Officer in his patrol car approached Cross’s van as a suspicious vehicle, Cross turned the van on and drove away.  The officer caught up with Cross and pulled him over.  When questioned, Cross told the officer that he had pulled over because of a “medical condition” and that he and B.W. were “just talking”.

The officer noted in his report that, “I did not believe (Cross) had to stop for a medical condition and furthermore as a coach and adult I felt his actions were highly suspect and inappropriate.”

The incident was forwarded to Lacey Police detectives at the time, but there is no record of any further action by the department until January of this year, when B.W. contacted Lacey detectives directly.  B.W. gave detectives more information about the abuse by Cross, including specific details of the location and nature of the sexual acts, as well as the damage the abuse has done to her ever since.  Although the case was referred to the Thurston County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, prosecutors have declined to prosecute Cross citing concerns with the statute of limitations.

“The criminal justice system may have failed her, but she is determined not to let this happen to another youth player,” B.W.’s attorney Kevin Hastings said.  “She wants the truth to be known and forcing these defendants to answer in civil court appears to be the only way that’s going to ever happen.”

Black Hills Football Club is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that claims on its website to be “the premiere level soccer club of the Thurston County Youth Soccer Association.”  The lawsuit claims that Black Hills Football Club failed to protect B.W. from her coach, and that the organization knew or should have known that a soccer coach “could or would exploit young soccer players” and that the failure of the club to properly supervise Cross and his teams led to the abuse suffered by B.W.

September 3, 2015

Backpage Loses in Washington’s Supreme Court

Olympia, Washington, September 03, 2015

Backpage.com’s highly lucrative online sex advertising business suffered a devastating legal defeat in Washington State today. In a ruling that could have a profound impact on websites that promote illegal services, the Washington Supreme Court ruled that three minor girls who allege they were trafficked for sex on Backpage can move forward with their case against the website.

In 2012, the three girls filed suit in Pierce County, Washington, against Backpage and its parent company at the time, Village Voice Media Holdings, L.L.C. Their lawsuit alleges they were advertised for sex on the website and subsequently forced into child prostitution. At the time, two of the girls were in the seventh grade and one was in the ninth grade. Each had run away from home when they claim they were advertised and exploited through Backpage. One of the girls alleges she was forced to have sex approximately 20 times on a daily basis. In the past, Backpage and others have been successful at getting similar cases dismissed by claiming immunity under the Communications Decency Act of 1996 (“CDA”).

But in the majority opinion upholding an earlier decision by a trial judge, Washington Supreme Court Justice Steven C. Gonzalez wrote that this suit seeks to show that Backpage is more than just host for other people’s postings. Instead, Gonzalez stated that the girls “have been the repeated victims of horrific acts committed in the shadows of the law,” and that “[t]hey brought this suit in part to bring light to some of those shadows: to show how children are bought and sold for sexual services online on Backpage.com in advertisements that, they allege, the defendants help develop.”

Erik Bauer, a Tacoma attorney who represents the girls, believes the Court’s decision signals trouble for the website: “Backpage has claimed to the press and to the courts that it has some sort of system to prevent this illegal conduct, but its claims are defied by a few mouse clicks that show thousands and thousands of prostitution ads around the country. Almost every single advertisement is clearly for prostitution, yet Backpage and its lawyers claim the company is at the forefront of fighting prostitution. The Court today saw right through their smoke and mirrors.”

According to Jason P. Amala, a Seattle lawyer who jointly represents the girls with Bauer, the Court’s decision reflects the girls’ assertions that Congress never intended to give immunity to websites like Backpage.com. “The Washington Supreme Court today recognized that companies like Backpage.com cannot knowingly profit from sex trafficking just because they are a website. Congress never intended for the CDA to grant that sort of protection to websites.”

The girls’ lawsuit alleges Backpage knowingly created an online marketplace for sex trafficking, and then instituted “posting rules” to help sex traffickers develop their ads in a way that would evade law enforcement and promote prostitution. “Backpage.com developed these content requirements because it knows these methods will assist pimps and prostitutes in avoiding detection so that Backpage.com can continue profiting from their illegal activities,” the suit states. The lawsuit also states that Backpage profited from each ad, and that the site is the largest source of online sex trafficking in the country.

Amala’s law partner, Michael T. Pfau, takes issue with the company’s claim that it tries to protect children: “We allege the company knew for a long time that it was helping people advertise children for sex. The defendant’s lawyers and spokespeople want to talk about what it is supposedly doing now to protect children, but this lawsuit is focused on what it was doing before all of the public scrutiny. If Backpage genuinely wants to protect children, why did it hire lawyers to try to overturn a law that seeks to protect children?”

August 25, 2015

Montesano School District agrees to pay $1.1 million for a woman struck by a bus in a crosswalk

The Montesano School District has agreed to pay $1.1 million to a 73-year-old woman who suffered serious injuries when a school bus struck her in a crosswalk in 2013.

The district decided to pay the $1.1 million settlement to avoid the September 15 trial date scheduled in the Montesano court house, a trial in which the District had already been found to have been negligent for causing the collision in the cross walk.

Darrell Cochran, a Tacoma attorney, who filed the lawsuit on the woman’s behalf, said the evidence showed the school district’s bus driver may have been a “distracted driver”.

“The evidence suggested to us that the driver was either using a cell phone or extremely distracted by something she was not supposed to be doing when she headed into the intersection,” Cochran said. “The bus can be a deadly weapon when driven like that, and it nearly was.”

Mary Bryan, the woman who was struck in the crosswalk, was airlifted to Harborview Medical Center and spent nine days there after the collision. She suffered three distinct brain hemorrhages, eight broken ribs, a broken wrist and spinal injuries.

The bus driver was attempting a left turn at a stop sign when she struck Bryan as she attempted to walk across Pioneer Avenue.

Witnesses have said Bryan was thrown five to 10 feet through the air before landing on the pavement.

According to court documents filed by Cochran, Bryan has struggled with day-to-day tasks since her release from the hospital. Common chores like cooking and doing the dishes, and even getting around the house take great effort, according to the suit. And since the collision, Bryan has needed a regular caretaker, nurse and physical therapist.

If the case had gone to trial, doctors and Bryan’s family members were prepared to give testimony that Bryan suffered from memory loss, vertigo and loss of cognitive functioning as a result of being struck by the school bus.

“Mary is happy to have survived it all,” Cochran said. “It looked touch and go while she was at Harborview. She faces a continuing battle with the crash injuries, but the settlement helps take care of her and should ease some of the stress in coping with it all.”

July 24, 2015

Darrell L. Cochran Named 2015 Trial Lawyer of the Year

Tacoma attorney Darrell Cochran was named Trial Lawyer of the Year on Friday by the Washington State Association for Justice (WSAJ).  Cochran is managing partner of Pfau Cochran Vertetis Amala, PLLC.  The award, named after the late Washington Supreme Court Justice Tom Chambers, honors “a lawyer who advances the art and skill of advocacy, either in trial or by training others so as to benefit humankind,” according the WSAJ.

“I’ve been really lucky to have worked for years alongside great partners and supporting staff, and the award tells us that we’ve managed to make a lasting, positive impact with the job we are doing,” Cochran said after receiving the award.  “I’ve made a career out of the thing I love to do most; fight “to give a voice to the folks who would otherwise suffer silently.”  Cochran grew up in Olympia, went to Olympia High School and has been an attorney practicing primarily out of the Puget Sound region since 1993.

Cochran made headlines earlier this year as lead counsel in a class-action case against MultiCare Health System and a California collection agency MultiCare hired, Hunter Donaldson.  The case involved improper liens placed by Hunter Donaldson on MultiCare patients’ court settlements after they were injured due to another person’s negligence.  Hunter Donaldson was not registered as a collection agency with the state and was using a fraudulent notary to file its liens with the county recorder’s office.  A Pierce County judge approved a $7.5 million settlement with MultiCare and the patients affected by the improper medical services liens back in January.

The lawsuit, and the circumstances surrounding the suit, lead the Washington State Legislature to enact a bill this year which requires collection agencies to be licensed by the state before attempting to collect on medical services liens on behalf of healthcare providers.  The law also requires full disclosure if medical services liens are used and mandates that a written release of lien rights be delivered to the patient when the medical bill is paid.

Also this year, Cochran received a win from the state Court of Appeals when it upheld a nearly $1.5 million jury verdict on appeal against the Olympia School District for failing to protect a student from being molested by one of the district’s school bus drivers, Gary Shafer.  Since the initial lawsuit, Cochran has filed five others against the district, including the latest in January involving a special needs student who was also sexually assaulted by Shafer.

Darrell Cochran - Trial Lawyer of the Year 2015

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