13 Outrageous, Unbelievable, and Frivolous Lawsuits

Thursday, July 23, 2009

I loved Harriet''s Thursday 13 last week of dumb criminal stories. So I going to take a cue from her and this week list 13 insanely outrageous and frivolous lawsuits.

We've all heard about the lawsuits that make us want throw bricks at the idiot jurors and judges; like the $2.86 million award to the woman who spilled her hot McDonald's coffee (and created the need to put "Caution: Coffee Is Hot" on coffee cups...duh!).

Well, here is a few more that will make you wonder about the IQ of the litigant and his/her attorney:

  1. In 1991, Richard Overton sued Anheuser-Busch for false and misleading advertising under Michigan State law. The complaint specifically referenced ads involving, among other things, fantasies of beautiful women in tropical settings that came to life for two men driving a Bud Light truck. In addition to two claims of false advertising, Mr. Overton included a third claim in his complaint in which he claimed to have suffered emotional distress, mental injury, and financial loss in excess of $10,0000 due to the misleading Bud Light ads. The court dismissed all claims.

  2. A West Bend man is suing the cable company that he feels made him addicted to TV, caused his wife to be overweight and his kids to be lazy. Timothy Dumouchel is asking for $5,000 or three computers, and a lifetime supply of free Internet service from Charter Communications to settle a small claims suit. Dumouchel told Charter that he plans to sue because his cable connection remained intact four years after he tried to get it canceled. "I believe that the reason I smoke and drink every day and my wife is overweight is because we watched TV every day for the last four years," Dumouchel stated in a written complaint against the company. He stated that he called Charter several times to get the service disconnected for good because he felt it was addictive, but they reportedly never did.

  3. A guy was stealing the hubcaps off a car in a driveway. He was hidden in some shrubs, removing the hubcaps on the blind side of the front door to the home. When the home/auto owner came out, the guy kept working on stealing the hubcaps. The owner, got into the car, cranked it, the thief dropped down so the owner wouldn't see him as he backed the car out. The thief's hand was run over by the automobile. He sued and won $28,000.

  4. A couple leaves their home for a weekend out of town. The thief breaks in through the back door of the home and gathers his loot in the kitchen for when he starts to leave. He goes through the entire house, gathering stuff, sticking valuables into pillow cases, ram shacking the house as he goes. Dumping drawers, dropping pictures off the wall checking behind for a safe, etc. The last place he enters to steal is the garage. He steps into the garage from the kitchen, and the door locks behind him. The family had locked the garage door so he couldn't get out that way. He spends 2 nights and 3 days in the garage until the family returns and catches him. He'd been living off a large bag of dog food in the garage and a couple cases of sodas. He sued and wins over $100,000 for inhumane treatment.

  5. Robert Lee Brock, a prisoner at the Indian Creek Correctional Center, filed a handwritten, seven-page $5 million lawsuit in federal court naming himself as Defendant."I partook of alcoholic beverages in 1993, July 1st, as a result I caused myself to violate my religious beliefs. This was done by my going out and getting arrested," wrote Brock, who is serving 23 years for breaking and entering and grand larceny. Brock asked that, if a judgment was awarded, that the state pay on his behalf since his status as a ward of the state leaves him unemployed.

  6. A California woman brought false advertising, misrepresentation, and other consumer protection claims against PepsiCo (which owns Quaker), for allegedly making her believe that the "Crunch Berries" in the cereal are actual berries. The filings alleged that she ate the cereal for four years before learning the fruitless truth. Her complaint was dismissed May 20, 2009.

  7. In March (1999), a federal judge in Syracuse, N.Y., rejected the latest lawsuit by Donald Drusky of East McKeesport, Pa., in his 30-year battle against USX Corp. for ruining his life by firing him in 1968. Drusky had sued "God . . . the sovereign ruler of the universe" for taking "no corrective action" against Drusky's enemies and demanded that God compensate him with professional guitar- playing skills and the resurrection of his mother. Drusky argued that under the federal rules of civil procedure, he would win a default judgment if God failed to show up in court.

  8. Lawyer Alfred Rava announced a $500,000 settlement of his lawsuit against the Oakland A's baseball team for "discriminating" illegally against men when it gave away 7,500 floppy hats to the first women through the turnstiles on a 2004 Mother's Day breast-cancer-awareness promotion. Rava may get about half ("attorney's fees"), and any man who swears he was among the first 7,500 fans through the gates that day, and who wanted a hat, will get $50 cash plus other premiums.

  9. Emoke P. Adams, 53, filed a lawsuit in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, in April 1992 against neighbor Theresa Bartlett for $25,000 for negligently squirting her with a garden hose. Adams cited "permanent" physical problems and emotional trauma resulting from the incident.

  10. In September 1992 in Chicago, Frank D. Zeffere III filed a lawsuit for $40,000 in lost dating expenses against a woman who had broken off their engagement. However, Zeffere, who is a lawyer, wrote her an offer of an out-of-court settlement, beginning with "I am still willing to marry you on the conditions hereinbelow set forth" and ending, "Please feel free to call me if you have any questions or would like to discuss any of the matters addressed herein. Sincerely, Frank."

  11. Patricia Frankhouser filed a lawsuit in Jeannette, Pa., in November 2004 against the Norfolk Southern railway as a result of being hit by a train in January as she walked on railroad tracks. Frankhouser, who suffered various cuts and a broken finger, claimed in the lawsuit that Norfolk Southern should have posted signs alongside the tracks warning people not to walk on them, that trains might be coming.

  12. James Samuel Steward, then 22, suffered severe brain damage after he took an overdose of methadone that someone had smuggled into jail for him while he was an inmate in Goulburn, Australia. In May 2004, Steward's parents filed a lawsuit on his behalf (because he is now unable to care for himself), claiming that it is the government's fault that their son got tempted, in that it did not smuggle-proof the jail, and the Stewards are asking the equivalent of US$2.7 million.

  13. Donald Johnson sued a West Palm Beach, Fla., Shoney's restaurant for $55,000 because he thought its clam chowder was potato soup, and the chowder left him with nightmares; in January, he won $407 in damages.

Can I Sue Someone For The Stupidity That Surrounds Me?

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2 chatted about this topic:

Devilish Southern Belle July 23, 2009 at 2:12 PM  

I never tire of hearing of dumb criminals and Darwin awards, but I get so riled up when I read about frivolous lawsuits. In my opinion, that ties the court's time up; time that they could be spending dealing with legitimate issues. At least some of them are thrown out/dismissed, though.

Here via T13!

jillconyers July 24, 2009 at 6:53 AM  

never ceases to amaze me! i'm another darwin award fan :)

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