In the Circuit Court of Forrest County, Mississippi; Civil Action No. CI12-0094
On the night of November 12, 2011, DeAngelo Wilkerson, a college student at Jones County Junior College in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, did what many college students do- he went out with his buddies for what he thought would be a good night out on the town at the time. Little did he know as he headed out that it would soon become the worst night out of his life.
DeAngelo met his friends at the Remington Hunt Club- which, if you will note from another representative case listed below (the incident in which took place almost exactly ONE YEAR PRIOR to this), as well as my blog, was very well known as a hangout for thugs, criminals, gang members and the like. It had been a serious issue for the citizens of Hattiesburg, as well as students in the little college town, since the day it opened. The ownership took little to no measures to protect its customers- they hired their own security, failed to provide formal training to their guards, did not have any standard rules and regulations in place for security guards to follow, nor did they run background checks on prospective employees. Simply put, the place was just too bad for business.
Unfortunately for DeAngelo, he became yet another victim that night when he left in the early morning hours to return home. As he got into his vehicle and prepared to leave, it was suddenly struck from behind. DeAngelo got out to survey the damage, and approached the driver’s side door and began to address him. For what is still yet an unknown reason, the driver of the vehicle hastily reversed in an attempt to flee the scene, and in doing so, DeAngelo was caught by his door as he grabbed onto it in an attempt to keep from being drug underneath the speeding vehicle. He failed in doing so, and was drug alongside, then underneath, the moving vehicle, whereupon he was run over not just once, but twice, as when the driver put his vehicle into gear to speed away, he ran over him a second time. Not shockingly, when the driver was apprehended by law enforcement later in the morning, it was determined that he had been drinking.
As one could surmout, DeAngelo sustained traumatic, life-threatening injuries as a result of the accident, far too numerous to list here; suffice it to say, after having the entire lower half of his body shattered and put back together again- not only once, but twice- his life will never again be the same. He has suffered, and will continue to do so for the remainder of his life, excruciating and debilitating pain and permanent damage to his body. Countless surgeries, infections, life-threatening illnesses due to his weakened physical state…. the need for countless skilled medical professionals, therapists, and around the clock assistance just to perform the basic functions of daily living- a split-second decision gone wrong with a lifetime of consequences.
As in the other case, DeAngelo’s case was not a simple one, with many obstacles to overcome on the path to justice. Albeit a great amount of the work had been done in the previous case against this Defendant, there still remained a large amount of ground work to cover- and corporate defense attorneys, compensated by the hour, to be dealt with. Finally, almost two years after filing suit, we were able to reach a settlement (the terms of which are confidential) and finally provide DeAngelo with his own justice, and perhaps, some closure.
As in the other case we filed against this Defendant, while it is nowhere near the happy ending that so many hope for in these cases, the resolution of this matter has allowed DeAngelo the opportunity to put this behind him, as best as he can, and move forward with what we hope will be a happy and successful future.