Putnam BoE pays $525K to settle two '08 suits

WINFIELD - The Putnam County Board of Education has settled two lawsuits for nearly $600,000.

Court records show the Board settled personal injury lawsuits filed against it by Nathan Crist, and Larry Jackson. The suits were settled on May 27, and Oct. 19, respectfully.

According the state Board of Risk and Insurance Management, the Board's insurance carrier, each received a six-figure sum. Crist was awarded $325,00, and Jackson $200,000.

In both cases, an additional $66,902.73 was paid out in legal fees. The bulk went to the Charleston law firm of Pullin, Fowler, Flanagan, Brown and Poe for defending the Board, with $4,162.50 to the Charleston firm of Cyrus and Adkins in helping mediate the settlements.

In both cases, the Board paid a $2,500 deductible.

In his complaint filed on Oct. 9, 2008, Crist accused the Board of failing to provide "proper instruction, supervision and training" after he was struck in the left eye by a golf ball while training as a member of the Buffalo High School golf team at the Meadowland Golf Club in Frazier's Bottom on Aug. 1, 2007. He alleged the injury was so severe that it caused a severe sclera rupture to his eye resulting in him losing it, and to be fitted with a prosthetic.

Crist, who graduated BHS in May and is currently a freshman at West Virginia State University, claimed he incurred $48,185 in medical expenses from the time of the injury until the filing of the suit. Also, he claimed that as a result of the injury he would incur an additional $200,000 in future medical expenses, and loose $467,440 in wages over the course of his lifetime.

Like Crist, Jackson, too, claimed the Board was negligent in supervising and training one of its employees when Davy L. Burdette, a school bus driver, rear ended Jackson in Winfield on Jan. 31, 2006. However, unlike Crist, Jackson, a Scott Depot resident, in his suit filed on Jan. 29, 2008, did not put a specific dollar figure on his injuries.

Putnam Circuit Court case numbers 08-C-24 (Jackson) and 08-C-339 (Crist)

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