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After four weeks of trial, a San Diego jury ruled in favor of Plaintiff Jeremiah Johnson, finding that Sergeant Michael Belz and Officer Jason Ferguson of the San Diego Police Department failed to act within the expected standard of care resulting in plaintiff's broken neck.  On February 1, 2012, Johnson called police to report that he had broken a window at his home.  SDPD responded in force with helicopters, canine units and multiple officers.  After Johnson directed the officers to his location, he was handcuffed, taunted and called a drama queen after having a panic attack.  When Johnson asked for a contact he knew in Internal Affairs, Sergeant Belz told him to scream as loud as he wanted, "he's not going to hear you".

Ultimately, Sergeant Belz and Officer Ferguson took Johnson down, forced his head into a fence and drove him to the ground - all while Johnson was handcuffed behind his back.  Johnson's injuries included broken cervical vertebrae and arterial occlusion.  The jury awarded Johnson damages for his medical bills, lost income, future therapy and pain and suffering.

The case was tried by Lepine Law Group founder Amy J. Lepine, associate attorney Sara A. Simmons and senior legal intern Brock Roverud.


Lepine Law Group represented a plaintiff land owner in Poway, California, in a property dispute. Plaintiff owned rights to an easement on an adjacent property for ingress and egress. Over the years, the owner of the adjacent property slowly encroached on Plaintiff’s easement leaving less and less of an area on which to get back and forth to Plaintiff’s property. Defendant even laid a paved roadway over the easement that was not in compliance with the city code.

After a four day trial and post trial objections to the implementation plan, the Court ruled in favor of Plaintiff demanding that the non-compliant roadway be restored to a condition that does not interfere with right of the easement owner. Plaintiff’s rights, and the Defendant’s unreasonable interference with his rights, were recognized by the Court. Plaintiff is now being given the benefit of his bargain.


In 2010, LLG secured a jury verdict of $2.8 million on a breach of oral contract claim against local businessman Arie de Jong. Plaintiff Jim Buckley proved his case to a jury of Defendant’s peers in Vista court before the Honorable David G. Brown. The agreement Buckley proved involved a long standing business relationship between the two men to expose corruption in the trash hauling industry and create business opportunities. The trial, initially estimated at four days, spanned four weeks of testimony and the presentation of evidence. Defendant’s post trial efforts to undo the verdict were unsuccessful.

The case was tried by LLG founder, Amy J. Lepine, and newly minted associate attorney Sara A. Simmons, who was sworn in to the California bar the day before the jury announced its verdict. Erik Thorsnes of Thorsnes Litigation Services assisted with exhibit presentation.

Plaintiff Jim Buckley is putting the proceeds toward developing an Agripost plant in San Diego. Agripost is a environmentally friendly, industrial composting project that turns trash into soil, potentially eliminating the need for landfills.


After protracted litigation due in part to malpractice by Plaintiff’s previous attorneys, LLG reached settlement with Defendants in a financial elder abuse case. An Orange County resident and LLG client filed suit in Bakersfield against his deceased father’s wife of ten months and his father’s financial advisor alleging wrongful violation of the Elder Abuse statute and other torts. LLG successfully defended his complaint against numerous challenges in civil and probate courts. Within hours of concluding the first day of the spouse’s deposition, Plaintiff’s offer to settle was accepted. Plaintiff recovered several hundred thousand dollars of his father’s estate in the settlement. Even more importantly, resolving the dispute vindicated LLG’s client and provided him with much-needed closure concerning his father’s passing.


For ten years our client sacrificed her own career and gave up a successful company to further the goals of her partner and lover. It took a jury less than three days of deliberation to reach a decision that was unanimous in its award of her damages: $600,000 to compensate her for the implied contract they found Defendant had breached when he put her out. This verdict is LLG's third consecutive success in jury trials prosecuting non-written agreements between intimates. A long paper trial and years of hard work was the conduct that convinced this jury that our client was entitled to compensation. Often it's the small things that are most persuasive and put the members of the jury into the shoes of a plaintiff. Call Lepine Law Group for a consultation about your potential case. 

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