From time to time we get to see real justice acted out. Unfortunately, it often starts with a tragic situation that required the need. Back in 2006, a young mother was horrifically murdered by a stalker that she had hired ADT Security to specifically keep her safe from.
The security system didn’t work as promised and as the Minneapolis Tribune reported:
(Teri Lee, 38, and her boyfriend, Timothy Hawkinson, 47) were killed in a second-floor bedroom on Sept. 22, 2006, just weeks after Lee spent $2,405 on an intrusion alarm But when Steven Van Keuren, a jealous and disturbed former boyfriend who had violated several court orders that prohibited him from contacting Lee, cut the phone lines outside system to protect herself against the man who would murder them both.her house in the early morning darkness, nothing happened. When he shattered a glass patio door with a crowbar, a sensor failed to sound.
Van Keuren crept up the stairs to Lee’s bedroom with a handgun, but two new motion detectors didn’t respond. The screeching alarm finally activated when Lee’s two daughters opened the front door to escape — after their mother and Hawkinson were dead.
The company took the position that the most that they owed was a $500.00 liability based on their contract. Thankfully, through excellent work by the law firm of Harper and Peterson, such nonsense didn’t prevail.
The case settled the Friday before the federal trial that was to start on Monday. As Bill Harper explained: "Was I surprised? A little bit," Harper said. "I thought they were going to maintain their denials and pretended defense right into trial, and I think they realized the failures that were accompanying their argument."
The settlement amount is undisclosed, but it is hoped that it will help her children deal with this loss. The money never replaces their mother, but it does provide for many of the things she was prevented from being given the chance to share with them. This is a story of why our system does work and how important good experienced legal representation is to a case.
A founding partner with Bradshaw & Bryant, Mike Bryant has always fought to find justice for his clients—knowing that legal troubles, both personal injury and criminal, can be devastating for a family. Voted a Top 40 Personal Injury "Super Lawyer" multiple years, Mr. Bryant has also been voted one of the Top 100 Minnesota "Super Lawyers" four times.