Commentary by Zebersky Payne Shaw Lewenz, LLP
On July 8, 2013, jury selection was done in the first Federal bellwether trial in the Bard MDL in the Southern District of West Virginia. A jury of five women and three men were chosen. Opening arguments began July 9, 2013 at 9 am.
U.S. District Court Judge Joseph R. Goodwin had a jury selected in just two hours in the first federal case naming a manufacturer of transvaginal mesh. C.R. Bard, maker of Avaulta meshes, is named as a defendant. Judge Goodwin has allowed the parties 12 trial days to complete the trial, with the second bellwether trial scheduled to begin July 29th. There are currently four bellwether Bard trials scheduled, with the third and fourth cases scheduled for August 19th and September 9th, respectively.
Opening Arguments proved to be interesting:
“Our job together is to figure out the facts. Trust is a sacred and powerful thing. Although a corporation may be doing good work, if you find they failed in warning, making and manufacturing this device, you must hold them accountable.” That was the opening statement from attorney Henry Garrard who represents Donna and Dan Cisson in the first federal trial over transvaginal mesh.
The other co-counsel for the Cissons, Lori Cohen of Greenberg Traurig of Atlanta, has an incredible courtroom demeanor and with her 55 straight win record will make her an enormous asset to the Plaintiff’s side. Cohen made herself known during Monday’s jury selection, smiling, greeting and shaking hands with almost everyone on the defense half of the courtroom.
Donna Cisson, 55, was implanted with the Bard Avaulta Plus BioSynthetic Support System to treat prolapse in May 2009. Her Ob/Gyn Dr. Bryan Raybon had determined she had a stage three out of four rectocele, or prolapse of the rectum into the vagina. The surgery took place in Toccoa, Georgia at the Stephens Co. Hospital, a town where Donna worked as a public health nurse.
Cisson is the first of nearly 4,000 cases consolidated in the same federal court naming C.R. Bard, the manufacturer of Avaulta line of mesh products, along with 20,000 other product liability cases naming five other mesh manufacturers.
If you or a loved one needs assistance with a Mesh case, please do not hesitate to contact Zebersky Payne Shaw Lewenz, LLP.
Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. Martin Luther King