Strongin Law Firm Wins Landmark $5 Million Victory Against County of Orange and After Sheriff’s Deputies Training Exercise in Parking Lot Causes Car Crash
Coming off of back-to-back-to-back trial victories, with only the weekend in between the last trial and this one, on February 16, 2023, Eric Strongin obtained a verdict for his clients, against the County of Orange of nearly $5 million after his client was broadsided in a parking lot where two Orange County Sheriff Deputies were following a vehicle with expired registration.
The driver of the vehicle was a deputy that was being trained by the deputy in the passenger side of the vehicle. After spotting the vehicle with expired registration exit the parking lot, the instructor told his trainee to "gun it." The deputies then accelerated to a speed of just over 50 miles per hour when they broadsided the plaintiff, Chaya Prizer, at an intersection.
The County of Orange argued that the deputies had the right-of-way and should be assigned zero liability for the accident. The deputies did not have a stop sign prior to the intersection, but the Prizer vehicle did. However, Eric Strongin argued that the deputies had an obligation to act reasonably, under the circumstances, and that they failed to take appropriate precautions when they accelerated the Sheriff's vehicle at an excessive rate of speed in a private parking lot, without activating lights or sirens. The jury agreed and held the deputies primarily responsible for causing the accident. Prior to trial, the County of Orange offered zero dollars to settle the case. (Prizer v. OC Sheriff, County of Orange)