A juror faints, the defendants rush to help: A mistrial in the Charlie Weis case

Bizarre turn of events:

A Suffolk Superior Court judge declared a mistrial in former Patriot coach Charlie Weis’s medical malpractice lawsuit today after two doctors involved in the case came to the aid of juror who passed out during testimony.

The juror began audibly gasping and collapsed at about 10:15 a.m. Several doctors — including the two surgeons accused of botching Weis’s gastric bypass — rushed to help. People in the courtroom began to shout: “Call 911! Call 911!”

Several people called for help, including defense attorney William J. Dailey Jr. An ambulance rushed the juror to a local hospital. His condition was not immediately available.

Weis’s lawyer, Michael E. Mone, quickly filed a motion for a mistrial after the man fell ill, arguing that the other jurors could have been influenced by what happened in court.

“I talked to my client and told him he basically had no choice,” Mone said outside court. “He was very reluctant to have a mistrial, but I told him there was no choice, and we had to have a mistrial.”

The judge had little sympathy for the hundreds of patients that would be affected by another trial:

A lawyer for the doctors said a mistrial would be unfair to the surgeons, who had rearranged their schedules to accommodate Weis, who is in the offseason for football.

Judge Charles Spurlock, however, agreed to grant a mistrial.

“The integrity of the court is more important than schedules,” Spurlock said.

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  • Gasman

    Damned if you do, damned if you don’t.

    If the physician/defendants had opted to sit on their hands don’t you think that would have influenced the jury? Would the judge have declared a mistrial in that instance also?

  • Anonymous

    Yes, he almost certainly would have.

  • Anonymous

    What a waste of time and money. I would recommend the time and lost income incurred by the physicians involved, as well as the increase defense legal costs, be recouped in a countersuit or credited against any judgment. I think the good judge, who is not losing in this situation, would agree this protects the integrity of the court.

  • Anonymous

    Why would anyone be entitled to additional costs because a juror fainted and a mistrial was declared?

    If a witness had inadvertently discussed insurance and the physicians moved for a mistrial, would you want the plaintiff’s costs reimbursed, as well as the attorney’s hourly rate for the time spent in trial to that point?

  • Anonymous

    “Why would anyone be entitled to additional costs because a juror fainted and a mistrial was declared?”

    Because costs were incurred and the defendant has nothing to gain in court. The burden of costs incurred must be borne by the plaintiff.

    Trust me that if a mistrail was requested and granted to the defendant, the plaintiff’s attorney would would expect payment for services rendered if an hourly rate was paid instead of a contigency.

    In this case the defense attorney will expect the hourly rate, and the opportunity cost to the physicians cannot be ignored.

    One of my proposals for legal reform is to have the jury at a location outside the courtroom with testimony presented in a delayed fashion via loudspeaker. This would permit any contested or objectional information from ever being heard by the jury and would have prevented the mistrails in the circumstances mentioned. It would also level the playing field to great extent and diminish the theatrics that too often obscure or diminish the facts.

  • Anonymous

    Physicians have no problems wasting the court’s time or the time of the defendant when they are busy whoring themselves out on PI cases. How does it now feel to be in the defendant’s chair? Should I call you a waaaahmbulance?

  • Anonymous

    No. A barf bag would be just fine.

  • Anonymous

    “Because costs were incurred and the defendant has nothing to gain in court. The burden of costs incurred must be borne by the plaintiff. “

    Again, why? Because you say so? If they had simply sat there and the defendant moved for a mistrial, would you allow costs for the plaintiff?

  • Anonymous

    its COURT, nobody has to pay anything unless their proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. that goes for any factors, such as the physicians compensation for work lost, they will definitely NOT get any green, they will likeky PAY the green

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