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Florida Hospital Alleges Juror Misconduct, Desires New Trial After Verdict in Maya Case

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The Florida hospital on the middle of the high-profile Maya Kowalski negligence case has requested for a brand new trial, alleging that the jury foreman improperly leaked info in the course of the trial, which resulted in a $216 million verdict in opposition to the medical middle.

Johns Hopkins All Youngsters’s Hospital requested the Sarasota County Circuit Courtroom final week to allow its legal professionals to interview the juror; to open discovery into alleged juror misconduct; to require the preservation of proof, together with texts by the juror and his spouse; and to order a brand new trial, in response to a movement filed Nov. 22.

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The jury foreman allegedly supplied info in the course of the trial to his spouse, who could have shared the data with a social media influencer who was on the trial, who posted on-line, and was reportedly linked with the Kowalski household, the hospital argued in its movement.

“This movement units forth an inexpensive foundation for a perception that Juror #1 – the foreperson – engaged in presumptively prejudicial misconduct in the course of the course of the trial by intentionally disregarding the Courtroom’s particular directions (i) to not focus on the case with anybody in the course of the trial, (ii) to not think about any proof or info outdoors of what was offered in the course of the trial, and (iii) to not kind or specific any opinion in regards to the case previous to deliberations,” the motion reads.

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The proof reveals “a surprising stage of involvement” within the case and bias in favor of the plaintiffs on the a part of the jury foreman’s spouse, the movement notes. The juror additionally posted on social media shortly after the trial, the defendants mentioned.

The movement for a brand new trial got here nearly two weeks after the jury present in favor of the Kowalski household and ordered the hospital to pay $211 million in compensatory damages and a few $50 million in punitive damages after Maya’s mother died by suicide in 2017. The case gained worldwide consideration this yr when Netflix aired “Take Care of Maya,” a documentary.

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The trial and verdict has raised thorny questions on well being care suppliers’ function when youngster abuse is suspected – and a couple of hospital’s legal responsibility and medical malpractice protection in murky conditions involving continual ache and oldsters’ rights.

Maya, age 10 on the time, was dropped at All Youngsters’s Hospital in 2016 with what was described as excessive ache and complicated regional ache syndrome. Her mother, Beata Kowalski, a registered nurse, urged medical doctors to offer doses of ketamine, an anesthetic proven to trigger hallucinations in some circumstances, in response to news reports and court docket paperwork.

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Workers on the hospital raised issues and reported their issues to youngster safety authorities. A county official suspected Maya’s mother suffered from Munchausen by Proxy, a psychological situation during which the caregiver makes up signs or creates them. After reviewing the case, a decide ordered that the woman be sheltered, not less than briefly, on the hospital.

After nearly three months with out bodily contact together with her daughter, Beata dedicated suicide.

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The household sued, and the jury in Venice, Florida, agreed with their contentions about medical negligence, battery, false imprisonment and different claims. The hospital mentioned it plans to enchantment, however final week requested for a retrial. The decide has but to resolve on the movement for a brand new trial.

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