Crane Collapse in NYC

On February 5, 2016, in Personal Injury, by Timothy B. Prakope, Esq.

Another Crane Collapse in New York City


Today there was yet another crane collapse in New York City. This crane collapse occurred in the Tribeca area of Manhattan and killed at least one person and injured several others. Over the past 10 years there have been several deadly crane collapses in New York City.  Investigations into to these crane collapses have revealed that some of the cranes collapsed due to negligence and even criminal negligence.

I have read many reports on crane collapses. In some cases the crane inspectors were negligent and chose not to report problems and issues that they noted. In other cases, there was little meaningful oversight of crane equipment and broken crane parts were not properly repaired.

I was involved in litigation surrounding the April 3, 2012, crane collapse. This crane collapse occurred during the extension of the No. 7 subway line.  At that time, I worked as an associate for Jeffrey Manheimer, Esq.  We represented the family of a young man who was crushed to death when a 170 foot crane collapsed onto the job site. Jeff and I successfully recovered a significant sum for his family. However, no amount of money would ever replace the hole that his death left in his family’s heart.

When people fail to do their job, when crane owners and construction company owners fail to take the proper precautions to keep their equipment and workers safe, and when inspectors turn a blind eye to violations – people die. It ruins lives and families. Sadly, these types of tragedies happen on an almost daily basis in the construction industry because construction is a very dangerous occupation.

If you or a loved one is injured as a result of a construction accident or a work-place accident, you need aggressive attorneys to fight for you. The attorneys at Vaughn, Weber & Prakope work hard to bring justice to the injured and hold those responsible accountable. Please call our office for a free consultation (516-858-2620).



Timothy B. Prakope, Esq.

On February 5, 2016, in Message/News Board, by Robbie L. Vaughn, Esq.

Mr. Timothy B. Prakope, Esq.Tim Prakope Law Firm Photo

Mr. Prakope joined our firm in August 2015 and focuses on personal injury matters. He was trained as a trial attorney and is an aggressive advocate for persons who are injured as a result of someone else’s negligence whether through medical malpractice, work-place injury, motor vehicle accidents, or slip and fall accidents. While studying in law school, Mr. Prakope was a full time law clerk at the insurance defense firm Ahmuty, Demers & McManus and became an associate attorney after his graduation from law school. While at Ahmuty, Demers & McManus, from 2007 to 2012, Mr. Prakope practiced in the area of professional malpractice and general liability defense. His clients consisted of dentists, nurses, mid-wives, radiologists, lawyers, nursing homes, rehabilitation centers, architects, engineers, construction companies, municipalities, and corporations. He was involved in all aspects of litigation from investigation to trial.

In 2012, Mr. Prakope became an associate at the Law Firm of Jeffrey A. Manheimer, P.C., where he began advocating for the rights of victims of other people’s negligence. Again, Mr. Prakope was involved in all aspects of litigation including investigating an accident, drafting pleadings, discovery, motions, conducting examinations before trial, mediation briefs, preparing for and conducting arbitration hearings, settlement conferences, and preparing for and conducting trials. Mr. Prakope is a tough advocate and has earned the respect of his peers and adversaries alike.

Mr. Prakope received his Bachelors of Arts degree from the University of Michigan in 2003 and his Juris Doctorate from Touro Law School in 2008. He is admitted to practice in the State of New York. He is an active member in the New York State Bar Association, the American Association of Justice and the New York State Trial Lawyers.

Mr. Prakope is a devoted husband, father and attorney. On his free time, he loves to swim, surf, and fish in his hometown of Rockaway Beach. After a long day at the shore, he enjoys his second favorite pastime, barbequing and grilling with his family.

Mr. Prakope can be reached at 516-858-2620.


Facebook Tagging Violates Order of Protection

On January 21, 2016, in Criminal, by Robbie L. Vaughn, Esq.


Tagging Someone on Facebook Violates Existing Order of Protection

At least according to Acting Westchester County Supreme Court Justice Susan Capeci.

People v. Gonzalez, 6081M/15.

Gonzalez allegedly tagged her victim in Facebook posts.  She allegedly wrote “Stupid” and “You and your family are sad … You guys have to come stronger than that!! I’m way over you guys but I guess not in ya agenda.”  The victim said she received a notification from Facebook that she had been tagged in statements made by the defendant.

Gonzalez argued that the protection order did not specifically ban her from making contact with the victim via Facebook and moved to dismiss her second-degree criminal contempt charge. Justice Capeci found that the order prohibited Gonzalez from contacting the victim by “electronic or any other means” and denied her motion to dismiss the charges.  She cited a 2014 decision by the NY Court of Appeals, People v. Horton, 24 NY3d 985, in which the court found that Facebook messages are essentially email. Justice Capeci went on to state that “[t]he allegations that she contacted the victim by tagging her in a Facebook posting which the victim was notified of is thus sufficient for pleading purposes to establish a violation of the order of protection.”

New York Penal Law § 215.50 – Criminal Contempt in the Second Degree. Second Degree Criminal Contempt is a class “A” misdemeanor.


Medical Malpractice Leads to 2 Million Dollar Verdict

On January 20, 2016, in Personal Injury, by Robbie L. Vaughn, Esq.

Doctor’s malpratice leads to patient’s death and a 2 million dollar jury verdict

Olmedo Rosas, as Administrator of the Estate of Roberto Rosas v. Phillip Edwin Stieg, MD, Obiora Olisaeloka Anyoku, M.D., St. John’s Episcopal Hospital-South Shore and New York Presbyterian Hospital New York Hospital Division, No. 32185/09

This case dates back to 2005 and was heard in Queens Supreme Court. Mr. Rosas went to St. John’s Episcopal Hospital, in Far Rockaway, Queens, complaining of a severe headache. It was determined that he was suffering from a cerebral hemorrhage. An internist was assigned to treat Mr. Rosas. Several hours later, Mr. Rosas’ condition was found to have deteriorated and he experienced cardiopulmonary arrest. He was resuscitated, but a second arrest occurred and the Mr. Rosas expired.

The estate argued that Mr. Rosas’ hemorrhage required a neurologist’s intervention and that he should have been transferred to a facility that could have provided such treatment. The estate had experts testify that the attending physician failed to accurately and completely document Mr. Rosas’ care, failed to timely intubate, failed to properly monitor the respirations of Mr. Rosas and failed to timely administer three drugs that could have stabilized Mr. Rosas.

Defense counsel contended that Mr. Rosas’ death was an unpreventable result of a second cerebral hemorrhage and that the attending physician timely ordered Mr. Rosas’ transfer to New York-Presbyterian Hospital, but the hospital did not dispatch an ambulance. There was no documentation of the calls and the defense’s emergency-medicine expert testified that accepted medical standards did not require such documentation.

Mr. Rosas’ estate sought $2.6 million for the wrongful-death and pain and suffering of Mr. Rosas. The jury found that the attending doctor departed from an accepted standard of care which caused Mr. Rosas’ death. The jury awarded the estate $2 million.

If you are in a similar situation and need legal assistance, do not hesitate to call the Law Firm of Vaughn, Weber & Prakope, PLLC at (516) 858-2620.

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