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Date: 10-08-1999

Case Style: Spielberg, et al v. American Airlines

Case Number: 96CV4763

Judge: Constance Baker Motley

Court: United States District Court for the Southern District of New York

Plaintiff's Attorney: Paul Indig and James P. Kreindler of Kreindler & Kreindler, New York, New York

Defendant's Attorney: George N. Tompkins, III of Tompkins, Harakas, Elsasser & Tompkins, White Plains, New York and Peter Hoenig of Biedermann, Hoenig, Massamillo & Ruff, New York, New York

Description: Aviation negligence - plaintiffs were passengers on American Airlines flight 58 which ran into turbulence while attempting to fly through a storm in 1995. The passengers on the plane were subjected to 30 seconds of severe turbulence. Thirteen brought suit. None of the plaintiffs except one suffered lasting physical injuries.

American Airlines admitted liability but contested the damages claimed by the various plaintiffs including Nancy Spielberg, the sister of Steven Spielberg.

Outcome: Plaintiffs' verdict for $2.22 million

Plaintiff's Experts: Peter Herman M.D., expertise unknown

Defendant's Experts: Unknown

Comments: The District Court held on July 18, 2000 that $150,000 in damages for each adult passenger was not excessive but there was no evidence that 2-year-old passenger suffered emotion distress. See: 105 F.Supp.2d 280 (S.D.N.Y. 2000).

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Reported by Kent Morlan

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