Pete Brush, reports on the website Law360 that the first of what may be many “aggressive” filings was brought this week by attorney Robert Vilensky on behalf of his client, police officer Eddie Russell. Given the fact that the accident occurred in the Bronx, long considered a “plaintiff-friendly borough, Brush writes that this is likely to embolden claimants to follow Vilensky’s lead. Attorney Robert Vilensky is seeking $10 million in punitive damages for his client’s mental and physical injuries.
Brush reports that Robert Vilensky of the New York City law firm, Ronemus and Vilensky, filed the complaint that says defendants including the railroad, its quasi-private Metropolitan Transportation Authority parent and New York City “wholly neglected and refused to make any adjustments or payments” based on the legally required claim notice.
Brush cites in his article a recent federal report that chastised the railroad for fostering a “deficient safety culture,” He noted that Mr. Vilensky hinted that simply compensating his client for medical bills and lost pay wouldn’t be enough and that a punitive claim was in order.
“It’s a scathing report,” said Robert Vilensky of the law firm of Ronemus & Vilensky, referring to the federal report. “You get on a train. You expect to get where you’re going safely. If you don’t get there safely because of a lack of concern about safety — that’s an egregious thing.”