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Rain is expected to hit South Florida Friday afternoon due to a disturbance being monitored by The National Weather Service in Miami

As of Thursday, this disturbance is located about 150 miles east of the northernmost Bahamas and has a 40% chance of becoming a tropical depression over Thursday and Friday. Meteorologists do not anticipate this storm to be a serious threat to the state, according to reporting from The Miami Herald. The disturbance will bring extra rain to the area as it approaches the east coast before heading north. 

Meteorologists with NWS in Miami have estimated about a quarter of an inch of rain beginning Friday afternoon. In areas where thunderstorms are predicted, rainfall estimates could be higher. 

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Leesfield & Partners proudly announces that the firm has secured $460,000 in combined settlements for two clients injured in separate Monroe County incidents. 

The first of the two cases, both handled by Leesfield & Partners Trial Lawyer, Evan Robinson, took place in February of 2022 and resulted in serious injury to the client. The case was able to be settled with a $10,000 award for bodily injury and $100,000 in uninsured motorist policy coverage. 

Uninsured motorist policies exist to protect injured drivers if the at-fault driver does not have coverage or cannot be identified, like in cases of a hit-and-run. This policy differs from under-insured motorist coverage which protects the injured driver if the at-fault driver’s policy cannot cover the full extent of the damages. 

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Dexter Butler, 38, was a pillar of his community in Key West, positively impacting the lives of his high school students, the young men on his basketball team and all who knew him. 

With a planned athletic scholarship to be awarded in his name, Butler will be afforded the opportunity to continue doing just that for his students.

“Coach Dex” and Butler’s Legacy

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An 83-year-old Marathon, Florida, woman retained Leesfield & Partners to represent her after a neighbor’s pet bird attacked her while she folded towels at the community pool.

The woman lives alone in the Marathon community in a two-story condominium and was watching her granddaughter swim in the pool the day of the incident. When she returned to the pool later on to retrieve the beach towels her granddaughter had left, a neighbor came down to the pool area carrying their pet bird whose wings are clipped. As  the woman folded the discarded towels, her neighbor put the bird on the fence around the pool near where the woman stood. The bird then reached out and bit the woman on her hand, startling her and causing her to violently fall to the ground. The woman was transported to hospitals a total of three times by ambulance and it was determined she had a broken hip requiring surgery. 

Following the bird attack, the woman was left bedridden at the hospital for several weeks and likely has several months of painful recovery and physical therapy still ahead. Due to the incident, the woman “sustained permanent disabling and disfiguring injuries,” according to a lawsuit filed in Circuit Court for the 17th Judicial Circuit in Monroe County. 

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Parents who chide their kids over playing late-night video games might think differently after hearing the news of Matteo Policano Wednesday in West Virginia.

Matteo, 10, was up late playing video games while his parents and four siblings slept when he heard a strange noise, according to reporting from a local news station. At first, the young gamer told reporters he thought the sound was from his game and ignored it. As the sound persisted, however, he became alarmed and woke up his father. They discovered the sound was coming from a carbon monoxide detector and, thinking it may need a battery change, the father decided to switch them out for new ones. When a second carbon monoxide detector within the home started ringing, the parents knew the situation was serious and rang emergency responders. An investigation discovered that “large amounts” of carbon monoxide was leaching into the basement from the family’s pool heater.

Hazards of Carbon Monoxide 

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Two pedestrians running in a weekend race on U.S. 1 near mile marker 17  in Key West were hospitalized after being hit by a car whose driver had allegedly fallen asleep at the wheel.  

The driver, 23, was heading north when officials say she fell asleep at the wheel, eventually hitting two men identified by NBC 6 South Florida as a surgeon named “Matt D.,” and a University of Miami professor named “Gabriel.” The two men were hit around 2 p.m. Saturday, May 18, and were participating in the Keys 100, a 100-mile point-to-point race to benefit The Cancer Foundation of the Florida Keys Inc, which offers various services to cancer patients in the Keys who have to be shuttled to and from Miami for treatment. As the driver fell asleep, her car went out of her lane to the right, hitting the first runner and then the second before stopping on the road’s right shoulder. 

The wife of Matt D. said in an interview with NBC 6 that part of her husband’s right arm had to be amputated and he remains in the hospital at Jackson Memorial Hospital’s Ryder Trauma Center for treatment. The wife of Gabriel, the other runner injured in the crash, said that doctors expect him to lose some function in his right arm. Both wives claim their husbands to be experienced runners with Gabriel’s wife adding that safety measures like cones and signs to tell drivers that there are runners in the area were missing. Keys 100 officials said in the article that the Seven Mile Bridge is coned, but not other parts of the course and “it [the entire course] never has been [completely coned off.]” 

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Nearly a decade after promising all properties listed on its platform would have detectors to safeguard guests from carbon monoxide poisoning, Airbnb’s CEO, Brian Chesky, called the task “very hard.” 

The comment was made in a recent interview Chesky had with NBC discussing difficulties that the company has faced. 

“It’s really hard to mandate things in 220 countries and regions and cities all over the world,” Chesky said in the interview. “And then if you mandate something, you have to have a mechanism to verify that it happens.”

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Leesfield & Partners secured a seven-figure confidential settlement for the family of a young woman who was killed in a single-boat accident. The accident happened under the cover of darkness and was caused by operator error. Our investigation revealed that speed and alcohol were the contributing factors to an accident that should never have occurred. The operator traveled above the speed limit with a blood alcohol level above the 0.08% limit. Traveling at high-speed, impaired, with limited to no visibility, the operator crashed his boat into a concrete dock. The extremely violent impact caused our young and unsuspecting female passenger to be thrown overboard along with the rest of the passengers. She was airlifted to a hospital with critical injuries but ultimately did not survive.

Operator Error is Leading Cause of Boating Accidents

Last June, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) issued its yearly Boating Accident Statistical Report, and there was an unfortunate increase in statewide boating-related fatalities. In 2022, Florida saw a total of 735 boating accidents, marking a decrease of 16 incidents compared to 2021. However, the sobering aspect of the report was the 65 lives lost in these accidents, which represented an increase of five fatalities compared to the previous year. Notably, since 2003, falls overboard have consistently been the leading type of fatal accident, with drowning as the leading cause of death.

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In the Courtroom

Partner Justin Shapiro represented a family visiting Key West from California that was involved in a jet ski incident and the firm represented the family of a Monroe County Sheriff’s Deputy injured in a motor vehicle accident.

photo__1823362_justin-150x150Unparalleled Experience and Success Representing Victims of Jet Ski Incidents

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In 1987, Leesfield & Partners opened their offices in Key West on the heels of a wrongful death case tried to verdict by Ira Leesfield. For the past four decades, the firm’s involvement in Monroe County has continued to grow both in the courts and in the community through educational programs, scholarships and contributions to numerous food banks. Every year the firm is a proud sponsor to the Marques Butler Memorial Softball annual tournament that is held in honor and memory of Marques Butler, a former client. The firm also looks forward to organizing, sponsoring and participating in the Monroe County Bar Association’s Annual Continuing Legal Education luncheon customarily held at Leesfield & Partners’ Key West Offices on Whitehead Street.

KW-BRIDGE-final-300x237It is through its personal injury practice that the firm makes the biggest difference in the community. Most recently, the law firm obtained an 8-figure settlement stemming from a house fire in Ramrod Key. This is the second time the firm has secured such a result for clients. A few years ago Leesfield & Partners tried E.E. vs. XYZ Resort Hotel & Marina and MARK JASON HOLMES to verdict and won $40,580,000 for his client. To this day, this remains the highest personal injury verdict in the history of Monroe County.

Ira Leesfield and his law firm also reached a seven-figure settlement on behalf of an Iowa family that was injured following carbon monoxide exposure at a Key West Hotel. In addition to proving that the hotel’s negligent repair to the boiler roof vent caused carbon monoxide to be forced back down into the boiler room of the hotel and into the adjoining guest rooms where our clients slept, the firm successfully fought for passage of Senate Bill 1822. It was the first law at the time that required public lodging establishments to install one or more carbon monoxide detectors that we all take for granted today.

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