Twenty-two year old. Omiesha Daniels, sought $1.1 million in damages due to a
car wreck she was in, where she lacerated and scarred her forehead and broke her
arm. She claimed that the injuries from the accident prevented from performing
as well as a hair stylist.
However, the jury only provided a $237,000 verdict. They then lowered it
to a $142,000 judgment. The defense attorney said the Daniels' Twitter
account hurt her case due to her posts. He said, "Twitter sunk her."
He went on to say, "Those kinds of comments and that level of activity
hurt the pain and suffering claim, even when she was saying she couldn't
work like she used to."
Daniel's personal injury lawyer said, "There was nothing she posted
that was different from what she said she could do, but with the jury
we had, there was some concern that if they gave this girl a large reward,
she was going to go out and party later. It's not a hard argument
to make to a very conservative jury." She had posted comments about
doing well and having fun, which are typical comments.
While this wasn't in
Johnson County, this is exactly the same concern car wreck
attorneys have in Johnson County. The jurors in Johnson County, Kansas are typically
very conservative and rarely provide for significant damage awards. Personal
Injury lawyers rather prefer for their cases to originate from Wyandotte
County, KS or Jackson County, Missouri.
The jurors there seem to relate more to the average person dealing with
everyday challenges and expenses.
Demographics may have played a part. While Daniels was black, the jury
was all white. Daniel's lawyer felt that the jury composition worked
against his car wreck client, because the jurors couldn't relate to
the difficulty of Daniels' job, which included African-American hair
braiding and weaving. There were 10 minorities on the jury pool,
but four of the minorities were released from jury service because they
couldn't speak fluent English. The Defense lawyer struck the remaining
six, according to Daniel's lawyer. He went on to comment, "The
dynamics were stacked against me."
The judgment award does cover the injured's $58,000 in medical expenses,
but it was far short of the $1.1 million and $1.3 million Daniels was
The moral of the story is, stay off of social media if you are in the middle
of litigation. It might be used against you!