New article today in the Leader about the Baez win.
It’s not bad. They do a good job of boiling down all of the complicated in’s and out’s of the case, and it’s worth a read just to witness Applebaum’s continued dishonesty about what transpired over the 10 years that they stretched it out.
During a school board meeting last week, Larry Applebaum said the school board could do little once the legal case began.
“I can tell you for a fact that the board, really once it got started, there was little that we could do,” he said of the litigation.
He also championed Doumanian, saying she has done “extraordinary” work representing the district.
“I’m not going to comment on whether I agree or disagree with her tactics. I don’t feel it’s my position to do that. She has worked on behalf of this district in cases that I’m familiar with and she has saved this district a lot of money,” Applebaum said.
“I’m not talking about saving money by being mean-spirited or by being difficult, but by coming to resolutions that were wins for both sides, which is not to say that we all walked away feeling great. We all probably walked away [not] feeling great, but a good compromise is usually a good compromise, and that’s what you want your attorneys to do, and a lot of those involved no litigation, which kept the costs very low for both sides,” he added.
What a lying sack of shit this guy is. It is simply not the case that this supposedly vigorous defense of theirs resulted in any kind of judicial “compromise,” and bad-faith Doumanian is not the only attorney they can find to help defend them in general. Baez got everything she wanted and more. People need to keep in mind that except for extremely rare cases of proven corruption and malfeasance, there are no punitive damages available to a public employee in California.
There was nothing to deal over, and the BUSD never at any time made a settlement offer to begin with. Applebaum’s implication is bogus — the possibility of any kind of real damages never applied to Baez v Burbank for there to be anything to negotiate. And no one’s complaining about them initially defending their management employees — – no one’s saying they should have immediately rolled over. And no one expected it.
Nonetheless, her third jury did award her a token $1 in punitive damages as a statement of their belief that the BUSD had indeed been acting deplorably. It’s the stupid, hard-ass adversarial position that they had always taken with Baez that was the problem. And apparently, it continues.
Baez and her attorneys knew this going in, but they fought hard anyway. All she got was $200,000. The only thing she ended up losing was the $20,000 that the BUSD’s insurer had paid out on her initial workers comp/one-hundred-days-of-half-pay injury claim. And that was only because of a technicality– the basis for the claim itself was never at issue. The district’s malicious behavior had caused the original problem to begin with, and that fact was never forgotten by her third and final jury.
But Applebaum doesn’t quit– he then goes into overdrive about their lack of responsibility. So if it’s not the school board’s “position” to evaluate the work of their subordinates and extravagantly paid legal help, then exactly who the hell’s it?
Let’s get real: this school board backed Doumanian to the hilt. Her tactics were their tactics, and all agreed upon in closed session — and if you ever saw Bunch and Kemp and Applebaum in action it’s no surprise. When the chips are down they’re all nasty pieces of work, especially Bunch.
These management people will never learn until they themselves get hit up for personal damages. When they start to lose their own homes over this kind of adversarial crap, then maybe — just maybe — they’ll wise up.
No? Probably not. They’ll just try to blame someone else. Like the victims.
In a couple of days we’ll tell you a personal story about what a disreputable guy this Applebaum is. It has to do with his old repair service. He’s always been a jerk.