Geoffrey Fieger announced that on Friday, March 21, 2014 a jury in the courtroom of Wayne County Circuit Court Judge Robert Ziolkowski rendered a $20 million verdict against the Detroit Medical Center and Hutzel Hospital for brain injuries suffered at birth by Chelsie Barker, age 15, of Detroit. It is believed to be the largest verdict this year.
Hutzel Hospital was alleged to have dumped Chelsie’s mother, a Wayne County Jail detainee, out of the hospital despite the fact that she was in labor and about to give birth. The hospital ordered that Chelsie’s mom be sent back to the jail in the middle of the night. Chelsie was born within an hour on the jail floor, but not before she suffered severe brain injuries.
“The testimony at trial showed that Chelsie’s mom was dumped out of the hospital because a resident did not like that she was dressed in jail garb,” Geoffrey Fieger said. “Throughout the trial, Hutzel Hospital and its attorneys tried to blame the Wayne County Jail for its own malpractice. Hutzel’s behavior at that time, and during trial was reprehensible.”
Chelsie previously received a settlement from Wayne County of $8 million dollars for a civil rights action that was filed on her behalf in the United States Federal District Court.
At trial, Chelsie was represented by trial lawyers Fieger and Jack Beam of Chicago.