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Recent Notable Cases

From the United States Supreme Court to state district courts across North Carolina, and from employment discrimination to school desegregation to the death penalty, Ferguson Stein Chambers Gresham & Sumter has been involved in countless numbers of influential cases throughout its history. During its first decade, the firm did more to influence evolving federal civil rights law than any other private law practice in the United States. While not every recent success is noted here, below is a sampling of the firm's notable cases from the past five years:

  • On December 13, 2008, Brian Nichols was sentenced to multiple life sentences for four murders and related crimes that were the focus of a high-profile death penalty trial in Atlanta, Georgia. The firm, through Henderson Hill and Jake Sussman, was appointed to represent Nichols in July 2005.
  • The firm settled a lawsuit filed in state court on behalf of four clients who had been victimized in the crossfire of a shoot-out between law enforcement officers and the man who had taken the firm's clients hostage. Prior to trial, the clients received a substantial (confidential) settlement.
  • In 2007, our client received $1,100,000 as part of a settlement for a wrongful death claim.
  • In 2007, our client received a significant (confidential) settlement for his FMLA (Family & Medical Leave Act) claim against his employer. The firm secured this settlement after winning in the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, which held that our client was prejudiced by not receiving notice of his FMLA rights from his employer.
  • The firm obtained a $225,000 settlement for a client whose arm was severely injured after she was run over in a drug store parking lot while being robbed.
  • In 2006, the firm secured a life sentence for Tim Allen, who was facing a death sentence during a retrial for a murder he committed in 1985.
  • In 2006, our client received $1,300,000 as part of a settlement for an obstetrical malpractice claim.
  • In 2006, the firm handled the real estate closing for University Park Baptist Church's $11.5 million purchase of the Charlotte Merchandise Mart.  
  • In 2005, the firm secured a reversal of Melvin Jay Hardy, Jr.'s death sentence based on trial counsel's ineffective assistance of counsel. Mr. Hardy was removed from North Carolina's death row.
  • In 2005, our client was awarded $420,000 by a federal jury after it found that his employer unlawfully retaliated against him for filing a discrimination claim. The case was ultimately settled confidentially before the court's ruling on attorneys' fees. 
  • In 2005, our client received $2,000,000 as part of a settlement for an obstetrical malpractice claim.
  • In 2004, our client received $3,000,000 as part of a settlement for an obstetrical malpractice claim.

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