Sunnyvale California Mesothelioma: Legal News
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SunnyvaleCalifornia - $ 5.9 Million Mesothelioma Verdict
RobertJohnsen vs. Kaiser Gypsum
San Francisco Jury Awards $5,900,000 toPeninsula Executive
On May 18, 2006, aSan Francisco jury awarded $5,900,000 to RobertJohnsen ofSunnyvale,California for asbestos-related cancers. The verdict against Kaiser Gypsum Company, Inc., a company that made asbestos-containing drywall products, is one of the largest ever in such a case.
RobertJohnsen was a 74-year old high-tech business executive who, at the time of his diagnosis, was working with Zero-G, a Cupertino, California-based company offering zero gravity (weightless) flights.
Mr.Johnsen was exposed to Kaiser Gypsum’s asbestos products when he remodeled his homes inColorado during the 1960’s and when he supervised the building of his home and office for his employer inCalifornia during the 1970’s.
In January 2005, Mr.Johnsen was diagnosed with malignantmesothelioma and lung cancer (two separate cancers). Mr.Johnsen was a lifelong non-smoker. At that time his prognosis was determined to be terminal and he was given a six-month life expectancy. He died in March 2007 at the age of 75.
Mr.Johnsen filed his lawsuit on July 11, 2005, naming several defendants. On May 18, 2006, the twelve-person jury found that the remaining defendant, Kaiser Gypsum, was responsible, in part, for RobertJohnsen’s cancers. The jury found that Kaiser Gypsum’s products were defective. Mr.Johnsen personally used Kaiser Gypsum’s products from 1956 to 1970 during which time he undertook five to six home and basement remodels for himself and others.
The jury found that Mr.Johnsen suffered $940,000 in lost income and medical expenses and awarded $5,000,000 in pain and suffering. Plaintiff’s expert witnesses included Dr. Barry Horn, apulmonologist from Berkeley, California; Dr. Richard Cohen, a physician who testified regarding the state-of-the-art, from Saratoga, California; Dr. Jerrold Abraham, a pathologist from Syracuse, New York; Dr. Arnold Brody, a cellular biologist from Tulane University in New Orleans; Richard Hatfield, an industrial hygienist and materials analyst from Suwannee, Georgia; Dr. Allan Smith, an epidemiologist from Berkeley, California, and Dr. Barry Ben-Zion, an economist from Santa Rosa, California.
Defense expert witnesses included Dr. William Hughson, apulmonologist and epidemiologist from San Diego, California; Dr. Gerald Meyers, apulmonologist from Berkeley, California; Dr. Douglas Fowler, a Certified Industrial Hygienist from Redwood City, California; Dr. Arthur Langer, a mineralogist from Brooklyn, New York; Dr. John Craighead, a pathologist fromFerrisburg, Vermont, and Edward vanderBogert, a construction management and safety expert from Lynnwood, Washington.