The New York Personal Injury Blog

February 2011 Archives

Smith Maceus Sues Walgreens After Getting Wrong Medicine

Queens resident Smith Maceus recently filed a lawsuit against Walgreens, claiming the store's pharmacy in Elmont, Long Island, mistakenly given him wart remover instead of the eye drops prescribed to him by his doctor. The New York Post reported the suit was filed in Queens Supreme Court and seeks $1 million in damages.

Maceus had gone through routine eye surgery last June, and his doctor provided him with a prescription for Durezol to help treat any pain and post-operative eye inflammation, according to the Daily Mail. But when he took his prescription to Walgreens, Maceus alleged that the pharmacist incorrectly gave him a similarly-named solution called Durasal that is used to remove warts.

Home Depot Employee Shakima Hardy Punches Customer

A verbal altercation about a return at a local Home Depot store in Mariners Harbor led employee Shakima Hardy, 28, to punch a customer in the face, according to the victim’s son. SI Live reported 66-year-old John Galarza, from Richmond Valley, fell to the ground and hit his head on the concrete floor after receiving the sudden blow from Hardy.

Galarza and his son wanted to return a roll of electrical wire, but Hardy and the store’s manager told them that the item could not be returned. Galarza’s son said the incident quickly escalated into an argument as Hardy began making disparaging comments to the elderly customer. Hardy then unexpectedly hit the victim in the mouth and allegedly knocked out some of his teeth.

New York Appeals Court Reduces Gloria Aguilar's Jury Award

Manhattan housekeeper Gloria Aguilar had her original jury award of $27.5 million from her personal injury case now reduced to $18 million by a New York state appeals court. The Appellate Division stated that the Manhattan jury’s payout was actually skewed and incorrect due to an error found on the verdict sheet.

According to the New York Daily News, Aguilar was coming home from her job in Queens when a New York City transit bus struck her while making a turn from 50th Street onto 10th Avenue. Aguilar, a mother of three, ended up losing the lower part of her left leg and also has a paralyzed right leg from the November 2005 accident, leaving her wheel-chair bound.

Grand Concourse In Bronx Still Places Pedestrians At Risk

Most New Yorkers are either well aware of or have at least heard about the perilous risks of crossing the Grand Concourse. “It’s like a Boulevard of Death,” said city local Lisa Rodriguez.

The transit advocacy group Transportation Alternatives has even ranked the treacherous intersection as the tenth-most dangerous in New York City and the third-most dangerous in the Bronx, reported the New York Daily News. “It’s a big, scary street, and it makes people feel like they’re on the highway when they’re driving,” said Noah Budnick of Transportation Alternatives.

Can Consumers Face Health Risks From Drinking Energy Drinks?

According to Reuters, doctors fear that the ingredients in energy drinks might potentially put consumers’ health at risk as thousands of people across the country, including New York, drink more of these beverages every day.

Energy drinks contain a mixture of sugar, caffeine, and dietary supplements like vitamins and herbal extracts. While the effects of these ingredients are not fully known, pediatricians in Florida have shared several cases of people who have suffered seizures, heart problems, delusions, and kidney or liver damage after drinking one or more non-alcoholic energy drinks, including Redline, Red Bull, and Spike Shooter.

“The incidence is low, but in certain groups that pediatricians care for there may be higher risks,” said Dr. Steven E. Lipshultz from the University of Miami Leonard M. Miller School of Medicine.

Eddie Cortes Killed in Bronx After City Bus Runs Over Him

Police officials reported 76-year-old retired contractor Eddie Cortes was killed over the weekend in the Bronx after a city bus struck him on his way to buy groceries. Cortes, who was a father of 10, was crossing Castle Hill Avenue when the bus struck him as it turned off Starling Avenue, according to the New York Daily News.

"He was a good husband, a good father and a good friend for everyone," said Cortes' 76-year-old wife, Aida, as the victim's relatives grieved at the site of the accident.

Two Ironworkers Killed Falling Down Elevator Shaft In Manhattan

Two ironworkers were killed in Manhattan after falling down an elevator shaft that did not have proper safety measures. FDNY Deputy Chief Michael Mullins said the two men, 49-year-old Dover Plains local Brett McEnroe and 51-year-old New Paltz resident Roy Powell, had been working at the top of the elevator shaft when they fell 65 feet and landed on the scaffold below.

The accident occurred on a building site in Manhattan's upper West Side, according to the New York Daily News. Inspectors from the Buildings Department said McEnroe and Powell had been installing beams in the building's elevator shaft when one of the beams accidentally shifted. With nothing to help keep them in place, both ironworkers ended up falling down seven floors.

Alphonse Fletcher Sues The Dakota For Alleged Racial Discrimination

Alphonse Fletcher, who was recognized in Forbes magazine as one of the wealthiest black Americans in 2009, has accused The Dakota apartment building in New York City of racially discriminating against him. Fletcher claimed the apartment's co-op board refused to let him buy the space next door and combine it with his original apartment because of his race, according to Reuters.

Seventy-five percent of New York City apartments are co-operatives. This means the apartments have boards that represent its residents' interest while managing, establishing rules, and evaluating potential buyers for the buildings. Although these kinds of complexes typically cost less than condominiums, reports Reuters, tenants often have to give up their rights as a property owner to the co-op board.

Study Shows Car Accident Rates Increase After Super Bowl Sunday

New York football fans may want to make sure they arrange their travel plans accordingly to avoid getting into any potential car accidents as they anticipate the likely traffic leading up to and after the Super Bowl.

According to, a study by the University of Toronto compared crash data from 27 Super Bowl Sundays and found that the accident rate following the first hour of the Super Bowl jumps to 70 percent while motor vehicle collisions across the U.S. go up by 41 percent. The study also showed that the number of car crashes in the home state of the losing team climbed 68 percent after the game.

Shawn Schenck Sues City For Illegal Body Cavity Search

Bronx local Shawn Schenck, 47, is suing the city after several police officers allegedly carried out an illegal body cavity search on him in September. Schenck, who was mistakenly accused of dealing drugs, said he had walked into the Green Valley Deli and Pizza to buy some cigarettes when five cops suddenly came into the store and arrested him and four other men.

The lawsuit claims one of the officers took Schenck outside, put on a rubber glove, and reached inside Schenck’s jeans. The cop then probed around his testicles and anus to look for any drugs.

“You’re violating me!” he told the officer, who supposedly searched Schenck in front of almost 40 people.

Brooklyn: Tortilleria Chinantla Closed After Fatal Accident

State officials temporarily shut down Brooklyn's Tortilleria Chinantla after the unfortunate death of factory worker Juan Batten, who was killed after falling into a dough mixer at the factory. State officials said the Williamsburg factory was not closed as a direct result of Batten's death, but the accident did prompt investigators to reexamine the facility.

Batten, 22, had been reaching into the mixer when his hand got caught in one of the blades and pulled him inside the machine, according to the New York Daily News. The turbine immediately broke Batten's neck and killed him in an instant. The New York State Department of Labor and Occupational Safety and Health Administration are still investigating the fatal event.