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MARIN COUNTY'S NEWS MONTHLY - FREE PRESS
(415)868-1600 - (415)868-0502(fax) - P.O. Box 31, Bolinas, CA, 94924

June, 2006

 

Supreme Court Denies County in Elder Abuse Lawsuit
By Terri Alvillar

The County of Marin has been dealt two more blows in its defense of the Abernathy elder abuse lawsuit. The case involves Lillian "Abby" Abernathy whose will was changed to bequeath her million dollar Kent Woodlands home to Marin County Adult Protective Services social worker, Winnie Lau Casino, allegedly while Casino was managing Abby's case on behalf of the County.
The first trial jury found that Winnie Lau Casino's conduct was "outrageous and unethical;" however, it returned a verdict in favor of the County.

The trial Judge, Lynn O'Malley Taylor, later reversed her rulings and granted Abernathy a new trial. The County appealed that ruling but lost when the California 1st Appellate District Court in San Francisco granted plaintiff Thomas D. Abernathy (Abby's son) a new trial on February 22, 2006.

On March 9, 2006, the County filed a petition for rehearing by the 1st Appellate Court.

On March 21, the petition was denied.

On April 3, Marin County Counsel, Dorothy R. Jones, filed a petition for review with the California Supreme Court, and on May 5, that petition was denied.

The case now reverts to the Marin County Superior Court for a new trial. A case management conference is scheduled for June 19.

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