A few weeks ago a Hinds County jury rendered a verdict of $4,568,116 in Walls v. Williams-Pyro, Inc.
The trial involved a fire suppression device that attached underneath stove vent hoods. The device activates when flames from a stove top fire trigger a fuse on the device that causes a pyrotechnic explosion and fire suppressant shot from the device downward to extinguish the fire.
The plaintiff suffered 2nd and 3rd degree burns when a device released suppressant in sufficient force to splash grease and fire onto plaintiff.
Plaintiff alleged both failure to warn and a design defect. Plaintiff claimed that defendant was aware of the defects, but did nothing to remedy them. Plaintiff also alleged that there was no warning on the device.
Here is the Jury Verdict Form. The jury rendered a verdict of $568,116 in economic damages, $3 million in non-economic damages and $1 million in punitive damages.
The jury apportioned 75% fault to the manufacturer Williams-Pyro and 25% to Arbor Park Apartments.
Here is the Final Judgment. The total judgment was $3,676,087. The judgment does not mention the apparently applicable non-economic damages cap of $1 million.
Allen Smith of Ridgeland and Rocky Wilkins and Ben Wilson of Jackson represented the plaintiff. Win Gault and Brian Hannula with Forman Perry in Jackson represented the defendant.
Judge Winston Kidd presided in the case.