Charlotte Personal Injury Attorney Matthew R. Arnold of Arnold & Smith, PLLC answers the question “What exactly is a wrongful death claim?”
The death of a Georgia teen found in a rolled-up high school gym mat two years ago has spawned both a $100-million wrongful-death lawsuit and a $1 million defamation countersuit by three defendants in the wrongful-death action.
Kenneth and Jacquelyn Johnson filed the wrongful death suit against thirty-eight defendants after their 17-year-old son, Kendrick Johnson, was found dead in a rolled-up gym mat at his Valdosta, Georgia high school in January 2013. Johnson was found upside-down in the matt, which was rolled up and stacked vertically, in what officials have insisted was a freak accident, according to the Valdosta Daily Times.
In the lawsuit, the Johnsons suggest that Federal Bureau of Investigations agent Rick Bell and his two sons—Brian and Branden—were responsible for Kendrick Johnson’s death.
The Johnsons filed suit in Superior Court in DeKalb County, Georgia near the second anniversary of their son’s death. In their lawsuit, they alleged that the Bell brothers sought revenge against Kendrick after one of the boys fought with him. The Johnsons alleged that the boys’ father, Rick, commanded them to assault Kendrick Johnson.