It's the time of year for 2016 reviews, and today's Marshall News Messenger had one I thought readers might be interested in Judicial system in review: Marshall courts saw throng of good, bad activity in 2016 in which the paper's local courts reporter Robin Y. Richardson lists the most significant events in Marshall courts both state and federal during the year. (As readers know, Robin bird dogs all the local patent trials, so this isn't just state court).
The most significant, she reports, are the local homicide trials that I'll spare you the details on, but the most memorable occurred on National Adoption Day last month, which 71st District Judge Brad Morin (pictured) observed is one of the court's "better days." "We don't have anybody that walks out of the courtroom unhappy,"
The only activity in federal court that merited mention was a product liability trial in which a local jury found that a defective child seat caused brain and spinal injuries to a child, and assessed $34.4 million in damages.
The absence of Marshall Division patent cases in 2016 isn't surprising. As I'll discuss in another post, in 2016 accused infringers won five patent cases that went to trial in Marshall while plaintiffs only won four. Judge Gilstrap vacated the damages award in one of those five, and in the other three the one NPE case was $2.3 million and the other two - both competitor cases - were $8.1 and $17.4 million, respectively. So the single products case was the only significant verdict of the year, and as an adoptee myself, I'd vote for National Adoption Day as well!