A court in New York has awarded $45.2 million (appr. N16.5 billion ) compensation to a family of three after an incident at a shopping mall left the mother of the family with life-altering injuries.
Jeovanni Rosario, 13, and Raymond Hernandez, 12, tossed a shopping cart from a 79-foot-high landing outside a Target shopping mall on October 30, 2011, which knocked the victim, Marion Hedges, 53, flat to the ground.
She thereafter suffered severe brain damage as a result of the incident, which caused her to initiate a protracted legal battle against the mall, the company in charge of the mall’s security, and the teens.
Target was said to have failed to deal with a similar case involving a falling shopping cart in the past.
After a four and half hours of deliberation, jurors at the Manhattan Supreme Court held on Friday that the mall, Target, was principally responsible for the incident and awarded the huge damages to Hedges and family, the plaintiffs in the case.
According to New York Post, the six-man jury found the teens 10 percent responsible for Hedges’ injuries while assigning 65 percent of the fault to the mall and 25 percent to Planned Security Services.
The teens, Rosario and Hernandez, were sentenced to time in a juvenile facility.
The jurors awarded Hedges $40.7 million, her 19-year-old son Dayton, who was with her at the time of the incident, $2.5 million, and her husband Michael, who has been taking care of her, $2 million.
Reports say the defendants have vowed to appeal.