Workplace Violence Cases
Listed below is an example of a past case that we were fortunate to be involved with as well as information regarding how it was resolved.
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Myers v. Hessler
Franklin County | $3.2 Million Settlement
Leeseberg & Valentine represented eight victims and their families in claims arising out of the shootings and mass murders perpetrated by convicted killer Jerry Hessler. The actions filed included claims for wrongful death, personal injuries from the shootings and post-traumatic stress disorders suffered by survivors who, in some cases, witnessed the terrifying massacre of family members. Hessler was obsessed with and stalked one of his female co-workers, and he was briefly hospitalized at the Central Ohio Psychiatric Hospital shortly before committing the murders. Despite overwhelming evidence of Hessler being at high risk of committing aggressive acts of violence against identified individuals after discharge, he was released from the hospital with minimal supervision and follow-up care.
Litigation was successfully pursued against several mental health professionals and agencies, as well as the former employer of Hessler and several of his victims. Theories of liability included a failure to identify the risk and prevention of workplace-related violence, negligent assessment of the propensity for violence in mental health patients and inadequate supervision and monitoring in outpatient mental health treatment programs. To date, settlements totaling $3.2 million have been paid on behalf of the victims of the shootings.