October 11, 2007

The Sleazy Lawsuit of Andrea Eichhorn

I learned of this story out of Casselbury, Florida, via STUCK ON THE PALMETTO. And while they cover it pretty well, I'm so steamed that I decided to write about it, too.

Back in January, one year old Joey Cosmillo fell into his family's swimming pool. His mother found him, dove in after him, and brought him into the house to revive him, calling 911 for help. One of the first respondents on the scene was Sgt. Andrea Eichhorn. She slipped on a puddle of water from the boy, causing her to fall and break her knee.

Little Joey is permanently brain damaged; he's physically alive, but cannot walk, talk, or swallow. He eats and breathes through tubes.

Sgt. Eichhorn was covered by worker's comp. She missed two months of work. According to a statement released by the Casselbury PD:

"She returned to work in a light duty capacity for approximately a month thereafter. Eichhorn received full medical benefits, worker’s compensation care, her salary and accumulated sick and vacation time during her absence. Eichhorn was ultimately released for full duty.."

So she sued the Cosmillos. According to Eichhorn's shyster lawyer, workers comp and disability checks 'helped with medical bills, but wasn't enough.'
"It's a situation where the Cosmillos have caused these problems, brought them on themselves, then tried to play the victim," says David Heil.

Newsflash, Mr, Heil; they ARE the victims. Read the police report.

First, Eichhorn doesn't need any money to pay for her work-related medical bills. Worker's comp covers all of them. That's the law. You'd think a lawyer would know that.

Second, she works in a high-risk profession. As the saying goes, "you knew the job was dangerous when you took it!"

Third, this greedy cop and sleazy lawyer are suing based on negligence. They maintain that if the Cosmillos had cleaned up the water, Eichhorn wouldn't have slipped. Never mind the fact that they were trying to save the life of their child; the sleazebag lawyer responds that if the pool had been baby-proofed, the police would not have been called, and Eichhorn would not have slipped.

So what does the Casselbury police department have to say about this? Chief Jon Pavlis released this statement:
"I do not support the lawsuit filed by Sgt. Eichhorn and her attorney ... What happened to the Sergeant was an accident. She has been compensated for all time off the job due to this injury."

But the statement from the Police Department goes further:

"She discussed the possibility of filing legal action against the homeowners with Casselberry her police supervisors and the Chief of Police. The departmental supervisors and the Chief of Police recommended to Sgt. Eichhorn that she not file legal action against the homeowners since her on the job injury would be fully covered by the City’s workers compensation coverage that is provided to all employees. Eichhorn chose to file suit against the homeowners in this incident as a private individual"

Sgt. Eichhorn works in a dangerous profession, where grave injury and even death is a possibility at every moment of the day. She was injured in performance of her duties, and was compensated for her injury. She had a month of disability pay, and then went back to work.

Joey Cosmillo is in a nursing home, and will never have what anyone would consider a life.

I am outraged that this so-called police officer would inflict further suffering on this family. She isn't stuck with medical bills; she isn't facing huge expenses for care: all her medical expenses for this injury are covered. She must have dug through the gutters of the worst part of town to find a lawyer who thought she had a case.

Sgt. Eichhorn isn't driven by need: she's greedy. She's selfish. And those are two qualities we can't tolerate in our police.

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