Daily Journal Names McNicholas & McNicholas Disability Discrimination Case Against LAPD as 2022 Top Verdicts

Partner Matthew McNicholas and Senior Lawyer Doug Winter’s unanimous $4.3 million jury verdict on behalf of a veteran lieutenant officer with the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) was recognized among Daily Journal’s list of Top Verdicts for 2022.

In Lou Vince v. City of Los Angeles and the Los Angeles Police Department, the plaintiff was subjected to disability discrimination and retaliation after suffering a severe back injury and underwent a spinal fusion. Initially, LAPD and the City of Los Angeles agreed they would help him, but they neglected to do so after the commanding officer refused to accommodate his medical needs and restrictions and forced him back to work before he was ready to perform his full duties once again. After months of asking to be accommodated upon his return, they began retaliating against him for such complaints. This began a five-year campaign of adverse actions to continue sending Vince a message: stop complaining or we will never let you out of the penalty box.

One important moment during the trial was when the Valley Bureau’s deputy chief had to admit that he’d kept a secret file about Vince and two others suing the department, but then destroyed it well before trial. Matthew McNicholas said he told the jurors that the file was to “collect dirt on [Vince] so they could cover themselves, and they didn’t want you to see it.”

Each year, Daily Journal publishes a list of California’s top verdicts by dollar, impact, defense victories and appellate reversals.

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