Virginia: Wrongful Death – a Lawyer’s Verdict

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On March 14, 2012, a jury in Circuit Court for Montgomery County, Virginia, found that Virginia Tech officials were liable for the 2007 fatal mass shooting of 32 on its campus. The jury in Christiansburg awarded $4,000,000.00 to surviving family members for the wrongful deaths of students, Julia Pryde and Erin Peterson.

The Virginia Tech case raises some of the same legal issues pending before the Virginia Supreme Court in Richmond in Mr. Waterman’s brain injury appeal, Burns v. Gagnon, No. 110754 c/w Gagnon v. Burns, No. CL08-572. Common legal points of both crime victim lawsuits include sovereign immunity, gross negligence, special relationship, and legal duty.