No good deed goes unpunished....

jsw

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Original poster
Mar 16, 2004
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Andover, MA
From CNN:

DURANGO, Colorado (AP) -- Two teenage girls who surprised their neighbors with homemade cookies late one night were ordered to pay nearly $900 in medical bills for a woman who says she was so startled that she had to go to the hospital.

Judge Doug Walker declined Thursday to award punitive damages, saying he did not believe the girls acted maliciously.

Taylor Ostergaard, 17, and Lindsey Jo Zellitti, 18, baked the chocolate chip and sugar cookies one night last July.

...
Nice to live in a country where you can sue over almost literally anything. :rolleyes:
 

Applespider

macrumors G4
Thank goodness the judge showed common sense...

I can understand the woman being scared, particularly if she'd bad a bad experience in the past. I wouldn't answer my door at 10.30pm if I wasn't expecting something.

But given the kids apologised, their parents offered to pay her medical bill - the court case was just stupid and makes the 'victim' just look greedy.
 

Abstract

macrumors Penryn
Dec 27, 2002
24,378
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"The victory wasn't sweet," Young said. "I'm not gloating about it. I just hope the girls learned a lesson."
Yeah, and that lesson should be never to help her out, even in an emergency.

Hope she chokes on a cookie and has a REAL reason to go to the hospital, because judging from the quote in the 1st post, I almost got the impression that the girls had snuck into the house and startled the ghost out of the older lady that night (which would have been well justified), but seeing as how she only had to go to the hospital the next morning, this was just a b**ch being a b**ch.
 

jsw

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Original poster
Mar 16, 2004
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Andover, MA
edesignuk said:
Unbelievable. I'd love to know the ratio of lawyers to people in the US.
At times it seems there are more lawyers than people here. Even seeing all the lawsuit stories here, this one shocked me. They baked her cookies, knocked on her door, and ran away. So the woman - who apparently wasn't able to get a light of any sort functioning in time to discern that it was two teenage girls - sued. And won medical reimbursement. I think it's a safe bet that no one will ever bother her again. Perhaps the girls should sue for defamation of character or something....
 

iGav

macrumors G3
Mar 9, 2002
9,025
1
Young said. "I'm not gloating about it. I just hope the girls learned a lesson."
Yep... not to waste their time with you again, silly cow.
 

Abstract

macrumors Penryn
Dec 27, 2002
24,378
110
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But jsw, if they were to sue for defamation of character, their parents would just be teaching them to sue when you want to get someone back. Its the American thing to do, but c'mon, some people still have sense over there. Not everyone thinks its right.

I just don't like the fact that the 49 year old lady won in court, when she was obviously in such poor health that she drove herself to her sister's house to stay for the night, and then walked into the hospital the next morning. Didn't sound like trauma to me. If she suffered a heart attack, then great, but she really didn't have much of a medical issue at all except an upset stomach.
 

jsw

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Original poster
Mar 16, 2004
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Andover, MA
Abstract said:
But jsw, if they were to sue for defamation of character, their parents would just be teaching them to sue when you want to get someone back. Its the American thing to do, but c'mon, some people still have sense over there. Not everyone thinks its right.
Oh, I agree - I was being sarcastic. I think the whole thing's crazy.
 

Thomas Veil

macrumors 68020
Feb 14, 2004
2,435
5,462
OBJECTIVE reality
Oh for God's sake...this woman's paranoia (and any resulting physical reaction) is the kids' fault? Bull****!

In any town other than a really major city (where police tend to be unresponsive), if you hear something outside your house and you're frightened, you call the cops. (Imagine if this woman had done that and been confronted by an officer holding a plate of cookies!)

This woman's overreaction was her fault and hers alone. I hope the kids' families appeal.

So much for paying it forward. :mad:
 

wdlove

macrumors P6
Oct 20, 2002
16,570
0
The lady was wrong by not accepting the parents offer in the first. Essentially that is what the judge was communicating. I do that that the girls made a mistake by going out "late one night." If the $900 was her medical bill, then as well that ends well. The only problem is the cost of suing by both parties, that is where an appeal could get the lady to pay legal fees.
 

Space Cadet

macrumors newbie
Feb 2, 2005
18
0
Puget Sound
Paranoia is right

These little mountain towns in Colorado — Durango, Aspen, Steamboat Springs — are the most throw-back style places I've ever been in my life. It's like the '50s there with their parades, school shows and complete lack of jadedness.

True, the outlying towns do have methmakers and whatnot, but if there is any place left on the planet where you can find kids running down to the park, or playing hockey on the streets or doing something wholesome and healthy it is one of these well-to-do mountain towns.

Paranoid and litigious. She'll probably be passive-aggressived out of her neighborhood.
 

Mechcozmo

macrumors 603
Jul 17, 2004
5,215
2
1) Love the Google ads this thread is getting

2) Come on, wouldn't you be scared if two people came to your house and then ran away? I might have to get a heart attack going on to sue them! And how did she know that those teens were the ones at the door?

edesignuk said:
Unbelievable. I'd love to know the ratio of lawyers to people in the US.
You don't want to know. They might sue you if you found out.
 

Little Endian

macrumors 6502a
Apr 9, 2003
677
31
Honolulu
Now these Girls are just weird who in their right minds goes about baking cookies for people you don't know or barely know and deliver them after 10P.M. I guess Durango Colorado is really that boring where good kids have absolutely nothing else to do but acts of misguided kindness.

What is interesting though is how this case would affect buisnesses who are involved in delivery like FedEx, UPS, Pizza Delivery, Flower Shops etc. I wonder if this means I can sue the next time I get a delivery person who was unexpected or came to me as a mistake. Hey stuff like that happens all the time you don't see them getting sued for that. The only real mistake would be the fact that the girls failed to identify themselves but considering how paranoid this woman sounds and considering the unusual nature of the girls intention the old bat would have probably just freaked even more.
 

Roger1

macrumors 65816
Jun 3, 2002
1,152
0
Michigan
Little Endian said:
Now these Girls are just weird who in their right minds goes about baking cookies for people you don't know or barely know and deliver them after 10P.M. I guess Durango Colorado is really that boring where good kids have absolutely nothing else to do but acts of misguided kindness.
I disagree that the girls are wierd. I mean, come on, they're teenagers. They probably stay up late (like most teenagers), and have a lack of common sense (again, like most teenagers). It sounds like they didn't think their little suprise all the way through.

BTW, it doesn't sound like the lady was too hurt. :rolleyes:
 

solvs

macrumors 603
Jun 25, 2002
5,693
1
LaLaLand, CA
The lady they delivered the cookies to was only 48. 48! The way they made it sound, I thought she'd be a lot older. And why didn't she just call the police, so they could come out to make fun of her for calling them over getting a box of cookies. I hope this doesn't ruin the girls outlook on helping people, but it didn't sound like it did. I'm sure they'll just stay away from this woman next time.

Somehow, I have a feeling the woman is going to visited by others who won't leave as nice of a gift. Flaming dog doo, anyone?
 

stubeeef

macrumors 68030
Aug 10, 2004
2,702
2
The fact the lady left her house, without calling the police, means she wasn't that scared. A normal person would have been embarrassed after finding out it was homemade cookies from the kiddies next door. Only a HAG would have made a stink out of this, the fact she was living alone is anecdotal.
 

Sun Baked

macrumors G5
May 19, 2002
14,874
57
If we could look at the case, we'd probably find that the judge ruled against them because they made the offer to pay for medical bills.

Otherwise it's a little hard sometimes to tell what will set somebody off: because you may not know that the next door baglady has a restraining order agaist her ex-husband -- and ringing the doorbell and giggling at night would terrify her and give her a panic attack.
 

stubeeef

macrumors 68030
Aug 10, 2004
2,702
2
I'll grant you the possible problem past with the ex huzband - but that is even more the reason to call 911, or the police, not jump in the car in the winter in Durango.
 

Doctor Q

Administrator
Staff member
Sep 19, 2002
36,029
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Who wants to join me in a class action suit against jsw? His interesting thread, along with his animated avatar, surprised me so much that I bumped my elbow on the side of the monitor. I may never play professional tennis again.
 

zelmo

macrumors 603
Jul 3, 2004
5,490
1
Mac since 7.5
Doctor Q said:
Who wants to join me in a class action suit against jsw? His interesting thread, along with his animated avatar, surprised me so much that I bumped my elbow on the side of the monitor. I may never play professional tennis again.
Spoken like a true American. I'm with you, by the way. I've always thought that jsw was a shady character. But we ought to at least call it what it really is... a classLESS action lawsuit! :rolleyes:
 

rainman::|:|

macrumors 603
Feb 2, 2002
5,438
2
iowa
Little Endian said:
What is interesting though is how this case would affect buisnesses who are involved in delivery like FedEx, UPS, Pizza Delivery, Flower Shops etc. I wonder if this means I can sue the next time I get a delivery person who was unexpected or came to me as a mistake. Hey stuff like that happens all the time you don't see them getting sued for that. The only real mistake would be the fact that the girls failed to identify themselves but considering how paranoid this woman sounds and considering the unusual nature of the girls intention the old bat would have probably just freaked even more.
You are exactly right. The biggest thing this ruling affects? court servers! They don't have to identify themselves before the door's opened; generally that's a bad idea in their profession. But this judge just opened the doors for someone to sue a process server that knocked on their door. I'm amazed that a judge would force such a precident! Aside, of course, from the resounding stupidity of the case.

I hope these kids do learn a lesson tho: the world is a ****** place where you have to look out for yourself, it's a dog-eat-dog world, etc etc. I think every kid learns this at some point, whether it's getting mugged by a hobo that saw your cash when you were giving them spare change, or letting a "friend" stay with you and having your VCR stolen, or giving someone a ride and then being turned into their chauffeur for the day, something like that. Doing good deeds is nice and all, but there is no God doling out poetic justice that good-doers will be spared injury. It's just really sad that kids need to learn a lesson like that.
 

Sun Baked

macrumors G5
May 19, 2002
14,874
57
The cookie girls look like they'd scare the pants off me... :rolleyes:



Edit: On second thought, that probably wasn't the best use of that saying. :eek: