A Florida man made national news in November 2012 when he fired his gun into a car full of teenagers after he became enraged at the loud rap music coming from their vehicle. Michael Dunn claimed that one of the teens had a gun at the time of the shooting, but police did not find evidence there was a firearm in the car. Mr. Dunn was convicted of two counts of attempted murder early this year, although the jury was unable to reach a verdict on the charge of first-degree murder.
When someone is jailed for injuring or killing another person, does their victim stand any chance of recovering for their injuries?
Mr. Dunn’s conviction in the criminal case is a very good omen for any subsequent wrongful death case which may be brought by the victim’s family. The difficulty for the family is that, barring a successful appeal, Mr. Dunn will likely spend decades in jail as a result of his conviction.
After a verdict for the plaintiff in a wrongful death or personal injury case, the plaintiff still has the uphill battle of satisfying the judgment from the defendant’s assets. Insurance is typically the first source for recovery in a Missouri personal injury case, but where insurance isn’t available, the defendant’s personal assets may be the only source for recovery.
When a defendant is in jail, recovery is even more difficult because he or she won’t be earning a salary, and their legal fees in the criminal case may have eaten up much of their personal wealth. But that won’t always be the case, and a defendant’s residence in jail doesn’t need to stop the plaintiff’s recovery.
If you’ve been injured by someone who faces criminal charges for their actions it’s important to seek competent legal counsel immediately to ensure that your rights are preserved. A St. Louis Missouri personal injury attorney can help you evaluate your case and ensure that you receive the maximum possible compensation for your injuries.