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Posts Tagged "money damages"

Boy Scout Child Sex Abuser Ruled Incompetent

Posted by on Jan 12, 2016 in Child Sexual Abuse, Recent News

Boy Scout Child Sex Abuser Ruled Incompetent

An Orange County circuit judge has ruled that Fleet Peeples, Jr., is not competent to stand trial on child pornography charges that have been pending since February 2014, according to an article published on WFTV.com. Apparently, Mr. Peeples has been evaluated twice and has been found not mentally competent to stand trial. If he is not competent to stand trial soon, the State Attorney’s office may have to drop the case against Mr. Peeples based upon Florida law. Mr. Peeples is free on bail, and living at home. In addition, and importantly to me as a Florida child sex abuse attorney, while Mr. Peeples was being arrested for possession of hundreds of images of child pornography, he admitted to molesting and sexually abusing nearly a dozen young boys when he was a Central Florida Boy Scout leader. There is no mention in the story regarding whether Mr. Peeples is being prosecuted for the sexual abuse he admitted to inflicting upon those poor Boy Scouts. In the event that Mr. Peeples Boy Scout victims cannot received justice through the criminal justice system, they may be able to seek some satisfaction – probably in the form of money damages — for Peeples’ deplorable actions from the Boy Scouts. Organizations that cater to children owe the children a duty to supervise any adults that are placed in contact with children, including Scout leaders. Florida’s Statute of Limitations for past acts of child sex abuse is somewhat complicated. Any adult who wishes to assert a claim for past acts of abuse should definitely speak with an experienced Florida child sexual abuse attorney in order to learn his or her rights. If you have any questions regarding historical acts of child sex abuse in Florida, call Winter Park child sex abuse attorneys Kim Cullen and Robert Hemphill at 407-254-4901. Consultations are always free, and without...

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Money Damages Are Sometimes Only Justice Available

Posted by on Jan 11, 2016 in Motor vehicle accidents, Recent News

Money Damages Are Sometimes Only Justice Available

The family of a man and baby who were killed, and a young woman who was injured in an October 2015 car crash at the intersection of State Road 436 and State Road 434 are understandably upset to learn that the Seminole County State Attorney’s office has chosen not to prosecute the 75-year old woman who caused the fatal and tragic crash. However, justice can still be done for this family. The prosecutor’s decision highlights the difference between the criminal justice system and the civil justice system, and the differing legal standards and standards of proof that apply to each. According to an article on the ClickOrlando.com website, Seminole County State Attorney Phil Archer has elected not to press charges against Cynthia Guthrie because he does not believe his office can prove – beyond a reasonable doubt (the criminal law standard of proof) – that Ms. Guthrie is guilty of willful and wanton disregard for the safety of others, or that she acted with reckless disregard. Because the State Attorney is not prosecuting Ms. Guthrie, it means that she does not risk jail time or probation. However, this does not mean that Ms. Guthrie will avoid all responsibility for the crash. Under our civil justice system, Ms. Guthrie can still face liability for causing the accident. However, her liability under the civil system is financial (i.e. paying money damages), not the loss of her physical freedom. In a civil case arising from a car crash, an injured party, or the surviving family member of someone who has been tragically killed, only needs to prove that the driver was negligent in order to win. Not only that, but the injured party does not need to prove his or her case beyond a reasonable doubt. Instead, the injured party only has to prove that it is more likely than not that the driver was negligent or careless. Obviously, it is much easier to prove a civil case for negligence than a criminal case. This is good because it gives accident victims an effective way of holding negligent or careless drivers accountable – even when the criminal justice system won’t. We do this all of the time for our clients. If you have any questions following a Florida car accident or wrongful death case, call Winter Park car accident attorneys Kim Cullen and Robert Hemphill at 407-254-4901 or visit our main website by clicking here. We are a small, boutique law firm that has recovered millions of dollars for our injured clients. All consultations are free and without...

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Shocking Idea: Your Child Molested In A Florida Classroom

Posted by on Apr 22, 2015 in Child Sexual Abuse

Shocking Idea:  Your Child Molested In A Florida Classroom

I came across a news story that I thought would be worthy of sharing.  Central Florida News 13 was reporting about new sex abuse charges leveled against a former classroom teacher, Anthony Silva. Mr. Silva used to be a teacher at Renaissance Charter School in Orange County, until one of his former co-workers called 911 to report that Mr. Silva was inappropriately touching students and simulating sex with them.  He was originally charged, and put in jail. Now, Mr. Silva faces new charges of lewd and lascivious molestation, as well as false imprisonment of a child.  Apparently, the false imprisonment charges stem from some of Mr. Silva’s activities with students inside his own classroom. Of course, Mr. Silva is innocent in the eyes of the law, until he is proven to be guilty.  However, it is not often that these types of cases are instigated by co-workers.  Typically, child abusers are more careful and secretive about their activities with young children. If sexually abusive acts did occur on school grounds, then the Renaissance Charter School may face civil liability for money damages in favor of the injured students.  Institutions like schools owe children a duty to supervise the adults the school place in front of the children every day.  Schools should be allowing environments to exist where abuse can occur on the school’s campus. We were recently able to achieve a significant recovery for a client who was sexually abused by his Sunday School teacher in the church offices, during a Sunday church service.  The church really had no explanation for how that could happen. If you have any questions regarding sexual abuse allegations involving a school or church, call Florida child sexual abuse attorneys Kim Cullen and Robert Hemphill at...

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