$152 Million Boston Wrongful Death Verdict Awarded in Newport Cigarette Lawsuit

A Suffolk Superior Court judge has awarded $152 million in punitive and compensatory damages to the estate of Marie Evans for her Boston wrongful death. The 54-year-old Roxbury woman died of lung cancer in 2002. $71 million is for compensatory damages. $21 million of this is for her son William. $81 million is for punitive damages.

The Suffolk County wrongful death complaint blamed cigarette maker Lorillard for getting Evans hooked on cigarettes at an early age. At just age 9 she was given free samples of Newport cigarettes through a targeted marketing campaign that involved a vehicle driving through the Orchard Park housing development so free cigarettes could be doled out. Prior to her passing, Evans spoke on videotaped depositions about how she started smoking the cigarettes at age 13. She says that she was too addicted to the cigarettes that she couldn’t stop smoking them even though she tried a number of times.

Lorillard continues to maintain that it never used free cigarettes to target youths. The cigarette maker intends to appeal the Boston wrongful death verdict.

The jury found Lorillard liable on a number of accusations, including negligence related to its marketing of Newports to kids, failure to warn Evans about health risks from smoking, acting in a willful, malicious, and wanton manner, and breach of warranty through distribution of a dangerous product. They held Lorillard 70% liable for Evans’ death and found her to be 30% liable.

Smoking cigarettes:
• Is addictive.
• Can cause cancer.
• Attaches tar to the lungs’ linings.
• Releases carbon monoxide in the body.
• Impacts the skin.
• Can cause bad breath.
• Is linked to the development of cardiovascular diseases, heart disease, emphysema, chronic bronchitis, respiratory disease, and cancer.

You may be able to hold the party responsible for your loved one’s Boston wrongful death liable for damages.

Son wishes mother was alive, not the reason for $152M verdict against tobacco company, Boston.com, December 16, 2010 Jury Awards $71 Million In Lorillard Lawsuit, WFMY, December 14, 2010

Related Web Resources:
Lorillard Inc.

Massachusetts Wrongful Death Suit Against Tobacco Company Goes to Jury, Boston Injury Lawyer Blog, December 6, 2010
Questions about smoking, tobacco, and health, Cancer.org

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