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Jury Slaps SoCal Edison with $4.7 Million Verdict for Farmworkers

At Greene Broillet & Wheeler, our seasoned team of professionals have over 100 years of combined legal experience handling complex legal matters.

Jury Slaps So. Cal. Edison with $4.7 Million Verdict for Farmworkers

RIVERSIDE, Ca. (July 8, 2015)- A Riverside jury found private utility company Southern California Edison responsible for the death of a farmworker electrocuted while working in a grapefruit orchard. It took the jury one day to reach its verdict yesterday in a trial that lasted 6 weeks in Riverside Superior Court.

On July 9, 2010 31-year-old Pablo Padilla Ayala was using a ladder to pick fruit off the trees when he struck Edison’s low hanging high-voltage electric power lines. The plaintiffs’ lawyers argued Edison’s power lines violated safety standards by maintaining electrical lines too close to the trees and several feet below the minimum requirement of 25 feet high.

Lead trial attorney, Robert Jarchi a partner with the Santa Monica law firm, Greene Broillet & Wheeler, LLP represents the widow, Maura Cabrera Diaz, the couple’s two children and the decedent’s brother, who witnessed the accident.

“This verdict sends a strong message to Edison and other public utilities that power line safety is more than just a slogan on a billboard. When a company violates its own safety codes, people’s lives are put at risk,” said Robert Jarchi.

Mr. Jarchi, along with second chair counsel, Molly McKibben, argued Edison failed to maintain adequate clearance of the power lines so that workers such as decedent Mr. Ayala would come into contact with the high voltage lines and become electrocuted.

“There’s no amount of money that can compensate the loss of a husband and father but the family hopes this outcome will ensure Edison makes safety changes to prevent this type of accident from happening again,” said Mr. Jarchi.

  • Best Law Firms by US News
    Best Law Firms by US News

    Named in U.S. News - Best Lawyers® "Best Law Firms,” Greene Broillet & Wheeler, LLP ranks as Tier 1 Personal Injury and Product Liability firm in Los Angeles.

  • Consumer Attorneys of California
    Consumer Attorneys of California

    Many firm members have been honored by the Consumer Attorneys of California, including Browne Greene, Christine Spagnoli, and Bruce Broillet, recipients of the Marvin E. Lewis Award. In addition, attorneys Bruce Broillet, Scott Carr, Molly McKibben, and Tobin Lanzetta has been honored with the Consumer Attorney of the Year Award.

  • LACBA
    LACBA

    All of our attorneys are proud to be active members of the Los Angeles County Bar Association or LACBA.

  • The Inner Circle of Advocates
    The Inner Circle of Advocates

    Founding partners Browne Greene and Bruce A. Broillet are both members of the exclusive invite-only Inner Circle of Advocates, as two of the top 100 plaintiff trial lawyers in America.

  • Best Lawyers
    Best Lawyers

    No fewer than 11 of our attorneys have been selected to Best Lawyers® after an extensive peer review process.

  • Top 10 Wrongful Death Verdicts in California in 2019
    Top 10 Wrongful Death Verdicts in California in 2019

    Our attorneys were featured in TopVerdict for having one of the Top 10 Wrongful Death Verdicts in California in 2019, with $15 million won for the plaintiff in Keck v. Bel-Air Bay Club.

  • Super Lawyers®
    Super Lawyers®

    Our firm has more attorneys on the Super Lawyers® and Rising Stars lists than any other law firm in Southern California, with 15 members selected.

  • Top 50 Personal Injury Verdicts in California in 2019
    Top 50 Personal Injury Verdicts in California in 2019

    After winning $2.6 million for the plaintiff’s side in a head-on collision case, our victory was named in the Top 50 Personal Injury Verdicts in California in 2019 by TopVerdict.

  • American Board of Trial Advocates
    American Board of Trial Advocates

    Several of our partners are members in the American Board of Trial Advocates, a national invite-only association consisting of the most experienced trial lawyers.

  • WLALA
    WLALA

    Firm partners Christine D. Spagnoli and Molly McKibben have both been honored by the Women Lawyers Association of Los Angeles and are active members.

  • CAALA
    CAALA

    Several partners are active members in the Consumer Attorneys Association of Los Angeles, with attorneys Browne Greene, Bruce Broillet, and Christine Spagnoli named “Trial Lawyer of the Year."

  • Top 100 Settlements in California in 2019
    Top 100 Settlements in California in 2019

    Greene Broillet & Wheeler, LLP, was featured by TopVerdict in the Top 100 Settlements across all practice areas in California for 2019.

  • International Academy of Trial Lawyers
    International Academy of Trial Lawyers

    Bruce A. Broillet and Christine D. Spagnoli are Fellows with the invite-only International Academy of Trial Lawyers, a group of elite trial lawyers from over 30 countries.

  • International Society of Barristers
    International Society of Barristers

    Our team includes several Fellows and Associates with the invite-only International Society of Barristers in recognition of their trial advocacy.

  • America’s Top 100 High Stakes Litigators
    America’s Top 100 High Stakes Litigators

    As a member of America’s Top 100 High Stakes Litigators®, founding partner Bruce Broillet joins a select group of California lawyers. Only 0.5% of active attorneys in the United States receive this honor.

  • Lawdragon
    Lawdragon

    Lawdragon has selected five of our firm’s attorneys to the 2020 Lawdragon 500 Leading Plaintiff Consumer Lawyers list.

  • American College of Trial Lawyers
    American College of Trial Lawyers

    A preeminent trial lawyers’ organization in North America, the American College of Trial Lawyers have elected firm partners Bruce Broillet, Mark Quigley, and Geoffrey Wells as Fellows.

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