Dec. 15
Patrick and Crystal Hairston vs. Lightning Contract Services, Inc., and IO Coal, LLC
PA- J. Kristofer Cormany; J- William S. Thompson
* The Omar, Logan County couple demand jury judgment jointly and severally against the contract personnel provider and coal company for personal injury. Hairston says he suffered in June 2008 in IO Coal's Europa Mine in Boone County. He says federal and state mine safety regulations mandate a clearance of 24 inches between a personnel carrier and mine rib. Hairston contends he reported the company's "mantrip" had insufficient clearance and when operating the underground carrier later, his right leg was crushed against the mine rib, resulting in amputation.
Case number: 09-C-327

Dec. 16
Robert Pauley vs. Independence Coal Co., Inc.
PA- Kristina Thomas Whiteaker; J- William S. Thompson
* Pauley cites the West Virginia Human Rights Act, Family and Medical Leave Act and State common law in suing for wrongful discharge. He was employed in July 2006. He says migraine headaches caused him to miss several work days in 2008. In January 2009 he says he was verbally reprimanded for missing work. He says his wife required emergency appendix surgery in May, causing him to miss three days work. Discussions with his supervisor over absences resulted in being sent home and last May, Pauley was informed he was discharged "for not documenting his absence properly," and was given pay for unused accrued paid time off. He's presenting 13 issues for jury action, including violation of a substantial State public policy, awarding of back pay and benefits, reinstatement by employer, compensatory damages and litigation costs.
Case number: 09-C-328

Dec. 17
Brittany Trail vs. Massey Energy Co., A.T. Massey Coal Co., Inc.; Elk Run Coal Co., Inc.; Independence Coal Co., Omar Mining Co., Black Castle Mining Co., Peabody Energy Corp., Heritage Coal Co., LLC; Patriot Coal Corp.; and Pine Ridge Coal Co., LLC
PA- Roger A. Decanio; J- William S. Thompson
* The former 18-year resident of the Prenter-Seth area seeks jury awards for personal injury she attributes to well water contamination caused by coal mining operations. Trail complains the defendants, individually and collectively, maintain impoundments and inject coal slurry into the ground, disturbing, destabilizing and contaminating various strata overlaying aquifers which supply well water to residents.
Case number: 09-C-329

Thomas and Carolyn Giles, as parent and guarding of Michelle Brown, a minor; Karlie Pettry, a minor; and Emily Giles, a minor vs. Massey Energy Co., A.T. Massey Coal Co., Inc.; Elk Run Coal Co., Inc.; Independence Coal Co., Omar Mining Co., Black Castle Mining Co., Peabody Energy Corp., Heritage Coal Co., LLC; Patriot Coal Corp.; and Pine Ridge Coal Co., LLC
PA- Roger A. Decanio; J- William S. Thompson
* Another personal injury suit against the dozen coal mining companies as styled above by the family residing on Sandlick Road, Seth.
Case number: 09-C-330

Doris McNeely vs. Massey Energy Co., A.T. Massey Coal Co., Inc.; Elk Run Coal Co., Inc.; Independence Coal Co., Omar Mining Co., Black Castle Mining Co., Peabody Energy Corp., Heritage Coal Co., LLC; Patriot Coal Corp.; and Pine Ridge Coal Co., LLC
PA- Roger A. Decanio; J- William S. Thompson
* The 40-year-old resident of Seth has a personal injury suit styled the same as the ones detailed above.
Case number: 09-C-331

Dec. 23
Rodney D. Thomas vs. Massey Coal Services, Inc.; Universal Service and Supply, Inc.; and Coalfield Services, Inc.
PA- Michael Ranson; J- William S. Thompson
* Thomas' personal injury suit stems from his work assignment in late February 2009 by contractor Universal Service and Supply to install water lines for a bathhouse on Massey Coal Services property. Because the work site was too close to the edge of a bench cut, he complains, ground gave way and caused him to fall more than 50 feet and injure his knee, hip and back. Thomas seeks compensatory, general and punitive damages in an amount set by a jury, plus court costs.
Case number: 09-C-334

Jan. 6
Timothy and Ramona Mahon vs. Highland Mining Co.
PA- Timothy C. Bailey; J- William S. Thompson
* During his employment at Highland's Rum Creek and Freeze Fork surface mines from 1999 to 2009, Mahon says he was exposed to excess levels of respirable dust. He was medically diagnosed last June with silicosis severely impairing his breathing and leaving him permanently and totally disabled. His work place injury suit demands jury award of compensatory damages for him and his wife, litigation costs, pre- and post-judgment interest and a biforcated proceeding to determine Workers' Compensation offset.
Case number: 10-C-1

January 7
Joshua W. Clay vs. Arch Coal, Inc. d/b/a Mountain Laurel Complex; Carlos Porter, mine superintendent, and Jeff Roberts, mine manager
PA- Robert A. Kuenzel; J- William S. Thompson
* Clay worked underground at Mountain Laurel as a roof bolter last April. He cites disagreements with superiors over the pace of section advancement Clay says concerned gas levels. Then in May, Clay says he made co-workers, his shift foreman and Porter aware of a crack in the roof top and disagreed with shift foreman Greg Gray about continuing to advance the section because roof bolts on hand were too short to make a repair. Clay, not wanting to continue advancing the section, told Gray he wasn't feeling well and asked for a ride out. When on the surface, he was discharged by Porter and Roberts. Clay asks the court to reinstate his previous employment; determine personal damages, lost earnings and benefits, and punitive damage; and award pre-judgment interest and litigation costs.
Case number: 10-C-2

January 8
Curtis Butcher Jr. vs. Roger Ritchie, an individual; Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co., and Carolyn Dayton, an individual
PA- Harry M. Hatfield; J- William S. Thompson
* Complaint contests Nationwide's settlement offers subsequent to a February 2008 vehicle collision on W.Va. Route 85 near Greenwood. Butcher says he was safely operating a van for his employer, UPS, when Ritchie lost control of his truck moving toward him to cause the accident. Butcher says both parties have Nationwide policies and cites ongoing correspondence with the insurance company attempting to determine an amount he should receive because of injuries and expenses. He cites breach of contract and implied covenant, as well as unfair claims settlement practices by Nationwide. Butcher wants compensatory and punitive damages, plus litigation costs.
Case number: 10-C-3

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