Monday, August 31, 2009

Ex-Med Head Scores $10m Libel Verdict Against St. Petersburg Times

Official seal of City of St.Image via Wikipedia
A six-member Pinellas-Pasco Circuit Court jury has socked the Times Publishing Co., parent of The St. Petersburg Times, with a $10 million libel judgment in a case brought by Dr. Harold Kennedy, former chief of medicine at Bay Pines VA Medical Center.

Following a five-day trial, the four-women, two-man jury awarded Dr. Kennedy $5.1 million in compensatory damages and $5 million in punitive damages based on three articles that appeared in The St. Petersburg Times in December 2003, written by staff writer Paul de la Garza, who died at age 44 of a heart attack in 2006. The court excluded  de la Garza's reporter's notes as evidence for the defense.

The offending articles involved Dr. Kennedy's re-assignment from chief of medicine to his cardiology subspecialty. Dr. Kennedy presently resides in St. Louis and consults for the Cardiovascular Research Foundation, according to his attorney.

The newspaper plans to appeal the verdict.
Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

No comments:

Post a Comment