HOUSTON & LONGVIEW, Texas--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Sloan, Bagley, Hatcher & Perry Law Firm has won a $21 million verdict in a bench trial this week in Athens, Texas, on behalf of two young children abused by Jim Gunder over a six-month period in 2012. The Sloan Firm is a nationally-recognized law firm with offices in Longview and Houston, Texas.
In one of the largest verdicts in Henderson County, Texas, a court determined that Jim Gunder sexually assaulted two minor children after cultivating a relationship of trust with their mother.
The 173rd District Court of Henderson County, with The Honorable Dan Moore presiding as judge, issued its findings on Feb. 24 in the case of Jessica Newman, as Next Friend for B.M. and J.D. vs. Jim Gunder, et al., (No. 2014A-0451).
The court awarded the two children $7 million in compensatory damages for future medical expenses, past and future pain and suffering and mental anguish, and past and future physical impairment. The court also awarded $14 million in punitive damages.
“What was done to these two little girls was unspeakable, and it will affect them and those close to them for the rest of their lives. The verdict recognizes that and sends an important message that this conduct will not be tolerated,” said John Sloan, founding partner of Sloan, Bagley, Hatcher & Perry. John Sloan tried the case along with partner Justin Smith on behalf of the Newman children.
Long before the abuse took place, Gunder, along with his wife, took Jessica Newman and her daughters into their home after Mrs. Newman fled a prior abusive relationship.
“Jim Gunder became a father figure to Jessica, who called him ‘Dad,’ and a grandfather figure to the kids, who called him ‘Pop,’” Smith said. “Jim Gunder exploited that relationship and betrayed their trust to get access to these two girls.”
The court determined that Jim Gunder had cultivated a relationship of trust and confidence with both Mrs. Newman and her daughters and made findings that Jim Gunder had sexually assaulted the two minors over a six-month period of time. At trial, the lawyers from Sloan, Bagley, Hatcher & Perry presented evidence from experts regarding the harm caused by child sexual abuse, the treatment required to manage it, and the impact the abuse had on the children.
About The Sloan Firm
The Sloan Firm was established in 1980 and has offices in Longview and Houston, Texas. The Sloan Firm has an impressive track record in negotiations and litigation in its primary practice area of personal injury law with three board-certified attorneys in this practice area. The firm’s attorneys also have extensive experience in commercial law, employment law, product liability, insurance litigation, work place injuries, ERISA, and oil and gas law.
The Sloan Firm has successfully litigated on behalf of its clients’ cases involving product defects, traumatic brain injury, spinal cord injury, work injuries, medical malpractice, drunk driving accidents, trucking accidents, motorcycle accidents, highway defects, burn injuries, premises defect, sexual abuse, sexual harassment and wrongful death. For more information on The Sloan Firm or its attorneys, please visit www.sloanfirm.com or call toll free at 800-730-0099.