Civil Litigation in Oklahoma City Assault Cases

Injury litigation handled by Oklahoma City personal injury lawyers most frequently involves cases of negligence:  automobile accidents, defective products, premises liability accidents, medical malpractice, and others.  However, it is not uncommon for a crime victim to seek financial compensation from the defendant who caused his or her injuries through a civil lawsuit.  A criminal conviction may give the injured victim a sense of justice; however, it does little to compensate for the physical and financial toll of injuries sustained in a criminal act or act of violence.  A personal injury claim related to a criminal case will often involve an automobile accident or wrongful death lawsuit following a DUI accident.  Another common civil suit related to a criminal offense is seeking financial damages following an assault. Assault and battery can lead to years of suffering by the injured victim, but the criminal case is often prosecuted as a misdemeanor, resulting in minimal jail sentencing.  Even if the offender is charged with felony assault, the conviction does not alleviate the financial burden of the crime victim.  In these cases, crime victims may wish to hire an Oklahoma City assault and battery injury lawyer to seek financial compensation from their attackers.  Through a successful civil suit, a crime victim may receive compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, reduced quality of life, funeral and burial expenses, and more. Because the burden of proof is lighter in a civil case than a criminal case, a plaintiff may be able to receive a damage award even if the defendant is not convicted of the crime.  In a criminal case, the defendant must be proven guilty beyond the shadow of a doubt.  In a civil case, it must only be demonstrated that there is a "preponderance of evidence," that it is more likely than not that the defendant's actions caused the victim's injury.  One notorious example of this legal difference in action is the O.J. Simpson case.  In 1995, Simpson was acquitted of the murders of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman.   Goldman's family then brought a wrongful death lawsuit against Simpson, and Brown's family brought a survivor's suit.  The children of Brown and Simpson were awarded $12.5 million as part of their mother's estate, and the victims' families were awarded $33.5 million. Civil litigation following a criminal assault is not isolated to Hollywood.  In Oklahoma City, injured police officer Chad Peery has filed a lawsuit against the three men who attacked him outside a local bar, resulting in his paralysis, and against the establishment that continued to serve alcohol to the intoxicated men and who lacked sufficient security on the premises. Crime victims have a number of options for personal injury litigation following a violent crime.  From a premises liability lawsuit against an establishment with inadequate lighting or security to a personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit against an assailant in an assault and battery case, civil litigation can be a much needed means of financial recourse.

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