According to a spokesman from the Georgia Department of Transportation, thieves have been stealing storm grates throughout the Atlanta metropolitan area since December 2012. The thieves have not been identified by authorities. According to officials, these storm grates, which are used to cover drain holes, have been stolen along highways throughout the Atlanta metro area. The total number of stolen storm grates is approximately 600. These grates typically weigh about 200 pounds and are collectively valued at approximately $500. Georgia Department of Transportation officials are concerned that drivers in Atlanta may get their tires caught in the holes left behind on the roadways; another concern is that a pedestrian may fall into an uncovered drain hole, which could cause a premises liability claim to arise.
The Atlanta City Council has passed a new regulation that will require organizational officials to install carbon monoxide detectors in every public building in the city. Officials are hoping that the bill will help prevent public buildings from turning into dangerous properties in the event of a carbon monoxide leak. The bill came about after a tragic accident in which 44 students and 10 adults suffered from carbon monoxide poisoning following a carbon monoxide leak at an elementary school. A little over two months after the incident, the Atlanta Public Safety Commission reached a unanimous vote in support of the new bill. The carbon monoxide detectors must be installed in public buildings no later than July 1, 2013.
Another successful Creditor's Rights Seminar on February 14, 2013. Harriet Isenberg is the Co-Chair and seminar organizer. The seminar included amazing speakers on trial techniques, Professionalism by Judge Ben Studdard from Henry County, bankruptcy issues to avoid, and information concerning the newly formed Consumer Financial Protection Bureau presented by two government enforcers of the program. Over 125 attorneys attended.ment enforcers of the program. Over 125 attorneys attended.
A woman who was at the production of a play at Alliance Theatre in Atlanta sustained an injury when part of a stage prop fell and hit her head. The accident occurred late last month and the woman was transported to a nearby medical facility for treatment of minor injuries. Although no official lawsuit has been filed as few details have been released regarding the incident, a situation of this nature can sometimes rise to the level of a premises liability claim. While theater productions are not the typical site of a premises liability claim, the property owner could potentially be held responsible. Just like shopping centers or other commercial businesses, property owners are expected to keep their properties in a safe condition that does not result in an injury to customers, clients or guests.
Isenberg & Hewitt is sponsoring the Community Banker's Associations' Annual Community Banking Day at the State Capitol on Wednesday, February 20, 2013. This annual tradition began in 1990 as a way to honor community bankers and state elected officials, as well as to emphasize the important role Georgia's community banks have in providing local support to their communities.
When a loved one dies in a tragic accident or is murdered, it is understandable that surviving family members want to hold the individual or individuals responsible for the loved one's death responsible. One way to do so is to encourage criminal prosecution by Georgia law enforcement, where appropriate, but another way many families hold people liable for a loved one's death is through wrongful death lawsuits. These civil matters reflect both the irreplaceable value of a loved one's life, but also serve as an important step in seeking justice for a family member's death.
On January 28, 2013, Melvin L. Hewitt, Jr. was re-elected to the Board of Directors of Georgia's 'Crime Victim Advocacy Council' (CVAC) and appointed to serve as its' President for 2013. Mr. Hewitt will also chair the Board Development and Fundraising Committee and serve on the Legislative Committee. CVAC is a non-profit organization organized in 1989 under the guidance of an urban ministry program of the United Methodist Church, to respond to the unmet needs of crime victims in our society. While CVAC is a Christian-based organization, it is non-denominational in its membership and support and responds to crime victims regardless of the victim's race, sex, national origin or religious beliefs.
Melvin L. Hewitt, Jr. was re-appointed to the Advisory Board of the National Crime Victim Bar Association. The National Crime Victim Bar Association (NCVBA) is a non-profit organization and an affiliate of the National Center for Victims of Crime. Founded in April, 1999, NCVBA is the nation's first professional association of attorneys and expert witnesses dedicated to helping victims of crime seek justice through the civil justice system.
A lawyer for the Georgia rehabilitation center Narconon argued that a wrongful death suit brought against the facility should be dismissed. The judge took the information under advisement, and the case is set for trial in a month's time. The wrongful death suit was filed by a patient's family after their loved one died from a drug overdose while in the care of the facility. The patient was a former Marine who had been previously sentenced by a Florida drug court to an in-patient drug and alcohol rehabilitation center. The 28-year-old allegedly was drinking alcohol with an individual who works for Narconon. He was also using heroin with two former Narconon patients on the day that he died.
On January 22, 2013, bills to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act were introduced in the Senate and House of Representatives. S. 47, was introduced by U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and Senator Mike Crapo (R-ID), along with 19 other co-sponsors. The bill is substantially similar to the measure that passed the Senate last year, and includes the SAFER Act, which provides for audits of untested rape kits as well as additional tools to help law enforcement reduce the backlog of rape kits throughout the country. An identical measure, HR 11, was introduced in the House by Congresswoman Gwen Moore and House Judiciary Committee Minority Leader John Conyers (D-MI) with 152 other co-sponsors.