The Ohio Supreme Court will hear oral arguments on December 15, 2015 in
the victim's appeal of
Simpkins v. Grace Brethren Church, a civil case centered on the repeated sexual assault of a young girl
by her church pastor. The victim is appealing the lower court's ruling
that resulted in a drastic reduction in the original jury verdict -- from
$3.5 million to $350,000 -- because of legislatively adopted damage caps
in civil lawsuits.
This case is a classic example of legislators stripping Ohio citizens of
the constitutional right to have a legal dispute decided by a jury of
their peers. This poor girl was only 15 years-old when she was raped multiple
times. She reportedly now suffers from chronic post-traumatic stress disorder
and has had significant difficulty moving forward with her life. After
hearing both sides present all of the evidence, the jury decided that
the victim was entitled to $3.6 million as compensation for her injuries
that will likely last her a lifetime. Unfortunately, legislation motivated
by special interest groups has prevented this victim from receiving the
justice that she deserves.
Although Rourke & Blumenthal has had no involvement in this case, we
strongly support the victim and her legal team and hope that the victim
gets the justice that the jury felt that she deserved. We strongly believe
that legal disputes should be decided by juries based on the facts, not
by legislation influenced by special interest lobbyists.