This week on Getting Legal with Tim Misny, I’m back with the students of Villa Angela-St. Joseph High School for the third installment of the Q&A series. Once again, the students impress me with their thoughtful questions and give me a chance to talk about what inspires me the most, which is my clients.
This week on Getting Legal, I am talking once again with Julie Leggett, the executive director of the northeastern affiliate office of Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD). We have both been waiting eagerly for today to come, as it is the first session of the 2013 MADD Death Notification Training Seminar Series in Northeastern Ohio.
This series will allow officers from over 800 agencies, spanning four counties, to receive education on techniques for notifying individuals about the passing of a loved one. As a former police prosecutor, attorney for the Cleveland Police Patrolmen’s Association, and 32-year personal injury lawyer, I know first-hand how devastating this type of news can be.
Everyday police officers put their lives on the line to do this difficult work. By sponsoring this training series, I hope to help officers and first responders approach one of the most daunting aspects of the job, and consequently, help family members cope with what will be one of the hardest experiences they will ever face.
Click here to learn more about MADD and the 2013 Death Notification Training Seminar Series in Northeastern Ohio.
Getting Legal airs on CBS 19 every Friday morning at 7:55 a.m.
This week on Getting Legal, I welcomed Julie Leggett, executive director of the northeastern affiliate office of Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD). Julie and I were able to discuss not only what her invaluable organization does, but also to remind our viewers to be safe and responsible on St. Patrick’s Day this weekend, especially those going to the annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade in downtown Cleveland.
MADD serves our community by providing victim services, campaigning for tougher drinking and driving laws, and educating our community about this national issue. Theirs is a cause I feel strongly about, and I encourage everyone to rally in this fight for a safer future.
Getting Legal airs on CBS 19 every Friday morning at 7:55 a.m.
This week on Getting Legal with Tim Misny CBS 19 at 7:55am, we’re discussing the hot topic issue of drinking and driving.
This issue is front and center for Cleveland residents for two reasons. Not only is St. Patrick’s Day around the around the corner, but also because of the recent arrest of Cleveland City Councilman Zack Reed for suspicion of driving while under the influence.
I know Zack Reed personally. As a councilman, his work in providing local services to those in need is unparalleled.
It’s easy to jump on the media bandwagon and pass judgment, but we must keep in mind that Zack Reed is, indeed, innocent until proven guilty. However, even if the facts surrounding the 2:00 am Tuesday morning arrest are taken in the best light possible for the councilman, it ain’t good.
According to the arresting officers, Reed displayed obvious traits of drunkenness, not to mention his failure of the roadside sobriety test.
Julie Leggett, the Executive Director of the Northeastern Ohio Affiliate of Mothers against Drunk Driving, weighed in on Reed’s three DUI encounters by saying, “That’s three potential times that someone could have lost their life.”
When we put a spotlight on the drinking and driving problem in our society, the illuminated statistics are shocking, if not numbing.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 9,878 people died in drunk driving crashes in 2011. This translates into one death every 53 minutes. The Center for Disease Control determined that the average drunk driver has driven under the influence 80 times before his or her first arrest. And possibly the most foreboding mention is that one in three people will be involved in an alcohol related crash in their lifetime.
Unfortunately, the Zack Reed scenario is not the only case of DUI recidivism in the Buckeye State. Last year alone there were 147,000 three-time offenders and 33,000 five-time offenders.
Our legislature has enacted stiff penalties in terms of fines, incarceration, and drivers’ license suspension, but their efforts have proven to be ineffective deterrents.
As a former prosecutor, I have represented the state against hundreds of drunk drivers, and as a plaintiff personal injury lawyer, I have helped many victims of drunk driving and their families. I can tell you from first-hand experience that all the tough laws in the world won’t make a bit of difference.
My suggestion is that first offenders, in addition to spending a weekend at a cushy hotel watch videos on the horrors of drunk driving, should have to spend a week with a victim of a drunk driving accident or someone whose life has been turned upside down by drunk driving.
The devastation left in the wake of accident caused by a drunk driver is often times beyond devastating and, in fact, incomprehensible. I have represented families that were destroyed by drunk drivers and the toughest fact for the family to deal with is that the drunk driver has gotten on with their life and walked away unscathed.
These concerns are timely in light of this Sunday’s St. Patrick’s Day celebration. While the bars will be filled with people dressed in green excessively consuming libations, I know that they would think twice about getting behind the wheel if they had ever spent five minutes with a victim of drunk driving or someone whose life has been turned upside down by drunk driving.
Click here to learn more about my involvement with MADD and the 2013 Spring Death Notification Training Seminar Series.
Q&A with Cleveland Personal Injury Lawyer Tim Misny – The Reality Show and Tim’s Home Life: Getting Legal 104
Once again, I’m at my alma mater, Villa Angela-St. Joseph High School talking to high school students for a special series of episodes of Getting Legal with Tim Misny, which airs every Friday at 7:55am on CBS 19.
This week the students wanted to know how ”Misny Makes Them Pay: The Reality Show” has affected my life and law practice, and I also talked with them about finding the perfect balance between work and family.
At the end of the episode I let the students in on some BIG NEWS!! Enjoy!!
Check out last week’s Getting Legal, also filmed at VASJ: Cleveland wrongful death lawyer on “Evaluating Cases”: Getting Legal 103
My reality show, “Misny Makes Them Pay” provides an inside look at the circumstances surrounding people who have suffered tremendous physical injuries as a result of someone else’s negligence.
That “justice” is two-fold. First and foremost, I was able to obtain compensation to make my clients whole. But of equal import is my clients’ burning desire to make sure the tragedies they face never happen to anyone EVER again.
In one episode of “Misny Makes Them Pay” we followed the case of a mother who took her small child into a doctor’s office to receive a routine shot. While administering the shot, the nurse pulled the little boy tightly into her body and inadvertently suffocated him.
My client’s motive in pursuing her claim, believe it or not, was never about the money. Her only goal was to ensure that the nursing staff would receive continual training on the proper way to administer shots. In fact, she even attended the nurses’ training sessions.
I can’t imagine the horror she experienced that day in the doctor’s office and the many times she was forced to relive that day during the duration of the case, as well as through all of the subsequent training sessions.
My client easily could have curled up in the fetal position and tried to escape from this living nightmare. But instead, she found the courage of a soldier to endure the riggers of litigation, the whole time never compromising her principals.
And in the end, she won.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “But conscience asks the question, it is right? And there comes a time when we must take a position that is neither safe, not politic, nor popular, but one must take it because it is right.”
I hope that my clients’ stories can serve as a source of inspiration to people who have been made a victim and desire to change policy and make a difference, so that the tragedies they have faced were not faced in vain.