A Shelby County, Tenn., jury has awarded a $30 million judgment against a Memphis nursing home where poor care led to a resident’s death. The verdict includes $28 million in punitive damages against Allenbrooke Nursing and Rehabilitation Center LLC, as well as its two owners in New York and related companies. The case was filed in 2010 by the family of Mrs. Martha Jane Pierce, a woman in her early 80s who was a resident of the Allenbrooke nursing home in 2008 and 2009.

Mrs. Pierce was living in a shared room with her husband, William Pierce, when she developed pressure sores on her right foot that went to the bone. The sores became infected with fecal bugs and required her leg to be amputated in October of 2009. She died two months later. The jury returned its verdict finding Allenbrooke liable for negligence, violations of the Tennessee Adult Protection Act including fraudulent records of her care and medical malpractice.

The jury awarded $1.9 million for negligence and $129,000 for violations of the protection act. The breakdown of the $28 million punitive damages award is as follows: $2 million each for four companies and $10 million each for the owners, Donald Denz and Norbert Bennett. Cameron Jehl, a Memphis lawyer, represented the family along with another Jehl Law Group lawyer, Carey L. Acerra.

Source: The Commercial Appeal

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