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Santa Barbara Man Struck and Killed by Motorist

By Renee Nordstrand on May 18, 2010

A Santa Barbara man was struck by a car and killed on Saturday evening, the Santa Barbara Independent reports.   The accident occurred at State and Islay Streets around 8:30 pm.  The victim, who was homeless and whose identity has yet to be released, was crossing the intersection of State and Islay Streets as Javier Castillo, 23, proceeded northbound on State Street in a 2004 Mazda RX-8. Castillo told investigators he believed the man was going to make it across the intersection on foot before he reached it by vehicle; however, he miscalculated and struck the victim. 

The victim sustained a broken leg and chest wounds before passing away from his injuries at Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital. 

According to police, witnesses have substantiated Castillo’s account of how the incident occurred, and to date no criminal charges have been filed against him.  The investigation is still ongoing, however, and any witnesses to the accident should contact Officer Mark Hunt at (805) 897-3719.


If you’ve been forced to cope with sudden loss of a loved one due to someone else’s negligence, we at the Law Office of Renee J. Nordstrand understand your concerns and want to help.  Our resources, experience, and depth of legal knowledge consistently result in successful settlements for families who have experienced tremendous loss.   Contact Los Angeles and Santa Barbara wrongful death attorneys today for a free consultation.

Lawsuit Filed Against LAPD Following Deadly Crash

By Renee Nordstrand on May 17, 2010

The parents of Devin Leigh Petelski, who was killed following a car crash with a Los Angeles Police Department Patrol car on October 15, 2009, have filed a lawsuit against the police department, the LA Times reports. 

Petelski, who was 25 at the time of the incident and working as a substance abuse counselor, had entered the intersection of Venice Boulevard and Glyndon Avenue when a patrol car, driven by LAPD officers Ramon Vasquez and James Eldridge on Venice Boulevard, struck Petelski’s vehicle. The accident spun the police car, which slammed into a tree and traffic sign. Petelski was hospitalized and died two days after the accident from her injuries.

The Petelski’s lawsuit alleges negligence, citing that the patrol car was driving above the posted speed limit of forty miles per hour and that the officers were using neither lights nor sirens to warn other motorists as they sped.  According to LAPD Commander Stuart Maislin, the police department had recently implemented a policy before the crash that required all officers to use both lights and sirens when exceeding the speed limit in response to an emergency. Vasquez and Eldridge were responding to a burglary call, however they had not told dispatchers that they were responding to the call, and there was another unit that had already been dispatched to respond.

If you have lost a loved one in an a car accident due to someone else’s negligence, please contact experienced and compassionated wrongful death attorneys who will fight for your legal rights during your time of need.  At the Law Office of Renee J. Nordstrand, we offer free consultations and you won’t pay legal fees until we successfully settle your case.

Garden Grove Pedestrian Struck and Killed by Car

By Renee Nordstrand on May 7, 2010

A man was killed Wednesday afternoon following a pedestrian to car accident on Ward Street in Garden Grove, the Orange County Register reports. 

According to the article, the pedestrian was crossing a marked crosswalk at approximately 4 pm when a car traveling northbound on Ward Street failed to stop at the cross walk and struck the unidentified pedestrian, who was pronounced dead at the scene of the incident. 

Police state that drugs and alcohol were not a factor in causing the accident, however, gave few additional details as to how the incident occurred. 

If you have been the victim in a pedestrian to car accident, you may be entitled to monetary compensation for lost earnings, medical expenses, and pain and suffering. Contact skilled personal injury attorneys today for a free consultation and to learn how Law Office of Renee J. Nordstrand will fight for your legal rights.

Man Struck and Killed by Train in San Diego

By Renee Nordstrand on April 28, 2010

The Los Angeles Times reports today that a man died Tuesday night after being struck by a train in the 1600 block of Coast Boulevard in Del Mar.  The victim, whose name was not disclosed, was from the state of Washington and had been dog sitting in Del Mar.

According to the train’s engineer, the man continued to walk slowly across the train tracks even after he had sounded the horn.  Although the engineer applied the brakes, the train, which extended four feet beyond the tracks on either side, clipped the man after he made it across the tracks.

At the Law Office of Renée J. Nordstrand, we work aggressively to find answers and to recover maximum compensation for clients injured in train accidents. We understand that an accident can disrupt the lives of the injured and all those involved. Although we can’t undo the pain and suffering caused by an accident, we can work towards easing the financial burden associated with it.

Contact experienced train accident attorneys today for a free consultation.

Doctor Brings Suit Against Allergen Following Botox Injections

By Renee Nordstrand on April 23, 2010

An Oklahoma doctor has filed the second recent lawsuit against Botox manufacturer Allergen, the Orange County Register reports.  Dr. Sharla Helton, 47, alleges that the Botox injections she received in 2006 to alleviate wrinkles caused physical symptoms that included weakness, shortness of breath, double vision, and arm, hand, and foot pain.

Allergen denies that Botox injections caused Dr. Helton’s symptoms.

There are at least five other plaintiffs who have filed suits against Allergen, according to the article.  Helton’s attorney, Ray Chester, recently tried another case against Allergen regarding Botox injections and lost.  In that case, a young girl stricken with cerebral palsy was administered Botox injections to relax her limbs.  Allergen paid for the girl’s physician (and many other doctors nationwide) to be trained to inject an amount of Botox in patients that was equivalent to an overdose. The girl later died of respiratory failure, which Allergen’s attorney successfully argued could not be conclusively linked to the Botox injections as the cause of her death.

Court documents reveal that in 2005, a year before the girl began Botox treatments, Allergen reported 38 patients who had suffered seizures following Botox injections to the Federal Drug Administration, including nearly 20 children with cerebral palsy.

As Helton’s trial gets underway in the next month, Chester will seek again to prove Allergen’s negligence in disclosing the risks of using Botox.

If you or a loved one has suffered physical injuries after a drug manufacturer failed to disclose its side effects and risks, please contact compassionate, experienced product liability attorneys who will aggressively fight to bring your case to justice.  All initial consultations are free, and you won’t pay attorney fees until we win your case.

DUI Hit and Run Kills San Diego Man

By Renee Nordstrand on April 16, 2010

27-year-old Oscar Lopez was killed Sunday night after being hit by a drunken driver on the Interstate 5, the San Diego Tribune reports.  Lopez was sleeping in the back seat of while his wife, Angela Lopez, drove their 2004 Ford Explorer, when 43 year old William Romero struck the Lopez’ car after drifting into their lane.

Oscar Lopez was ejected from the vehicle and pronounced dead at the scene. The Lopez’ son, Oscar Jr., was also ejected from the back seat of the vehicle but sustained only minor injuries.  Angela Lopez and a front seat passenger Ashley Lopez, Oscar’s sister, were uninjured.

Romero, who was driving while intoxicated, fled the scene of the accident and was later caught by authorities and arrested.  He is being held on bail with felony charges of drunken driving and vehicular manslaughter.

If you have been forced to cope with sudden and wrongful death of a loved one due to a drunken driver’s negligence, please contact a wrongful death attorney today for a free consultation and to learn more about how Los Angeles and Santa Barbara wrongful death attorneys will competently and aggressively obtain compensation for funeral expenses and pain and suffering after your loss.

Stuntwoman Killed in LA Motorcycle Crash

By Renee Nordstrand on April 15, 2010

April Erin Stirton, a 28-year-old stuntwoman from North Hollywood, was killed on Tuesday in a motorcycle crash on the 101 Freeway near Laurel Canyon Boulevard.  According to the Los Angeles Times, Stirton attempted to pass a tow truck ahead of her in the same lane when she lost control of her motorcycle and fell, hitting the back wheels of the truck she was attempting to pass.  Stirton’s motorcycle then crossed two lanes and became stuck underneath the wheels of another truck.

According to a recent Los Angeles Times article (,0,6000706.story), there are about 100,000 motorcycle crashes annually in the United States.  In 2008, 5,290 of these crashes resulted in death.  In 2007, there were 85 fatalities resulting from motorcycle crashes in Los Angeles County alone, according to the Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System.

If you ride motorcycles, please be aware of the added precautions and risks you take when riding.  If you are injured in a motorcycle accident due to another driver’s negligence, protect your rights by contacting experienced attorneys. At the Law Office of Renee J. Nordstrand, we waste no time in beginning our own independent investigation of the accident by visiting the scene, preserving evidence, identifying and interviewing potential witnesses and working with experts to determine both the cause of the collision and the full extent of the injuries suffered by our clients.

Thirteen Year old Pedestrian Struck and Killed By Car on the PCH

By Renee Nordstrand on April 14, 2010

Los Angeles County Sheriff’s officials are continuing to search for witnesses to a fatal car to pedestrian accident on the Pacific Coast Highway on Saturday.  According to an article in the Los Angeles Times, 13-year-old Emily Rose Shane was walking northbound on the right side of the Pacific Coast Highway near Kanan Dume Road when she was struck and killed by a car driven by Sina Khankhanian, 26.

Authorities believe Khankhanian may have purposefully crashed his vehicle, although he did not intend to strike the victim. Anyone who witnessed the accident or has information may call the investigating Sheriff’s Department at (323) 890-5500.

This article does not give many details on how the accident occurred.  Many questions arise from the lack of information, such as whether the driver was distracted, under the influence of alcohol or drugs, or facing road conditions that may have caused him to swerve suddenly.  As the Sheriff’s Department continues their investigation, some of these details may come to light and help piece together why this terrible accident occurred.

If you have lost a loved one in a car to pedestrian accident, please contact wrongful death and car accident attorneys who can answer your questions and explain your legal rights.

Apellate Panel Overturns Ruling in Fatal Los Angeles Car Accident

By Renee Nordstrand on April 7, 2010,0,6659360.story

An appellate panel from the 2nd District Court of Appeal overturned a ruling by a Los Angeles Superior Court judge regarding second degree murder charges in a 2009 big rig to car accident on Tuesday, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Marcos Barbosa Costa, 44, of Everett, Massachusetts, drove a big rig on the Angeles Crest Highway into La Cañada Flintridge on April 1, 2009 despite the fact that his brakes were not working properly.  Costa passed two truck turnouts, where he could have safely stopped his truck, before his brakes eventually gave out and his truck struck a compact car, instantly killing its driver and passenger.

Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Lisa Lench dismissed second-degree murder counts against Costa in October, however the prosecution appealed her ruling and the three justice appellate panel found there was sufficient evidence that Costa was aware of the condition of his brakes and continued to operate his vehicle despite the risk it presented to himself and others.

This tragic car accident could have been prevented.  Each day, there are hundreds of car accidents in Los Angeles that could be averted by taking basic safety precautions.  When someone else’s negligence or lack of precaution causes you to be the victim in a car accident, contact experienced personal injury attorneys to learn more about your legal options and how we will fight for you to recover compensation for medical bills, lost earnings, and future care and treatment.

Amtrak Train Collides with Pick Up Truck in Moorpark

By Renee Nordstrand on March 2, 2010

36-year-old Joseph Tillery was killed Monday morning when the pick up truck he was driving collided with a westbound Amtrak train on Highway 118 near Hitch Boulevard at the Peach Hill Soils crossing, the Ventura County Star reports.

Tillery’s car was pushed a quarter mile down the tracks after being broadsided by the Amtrak surfliner train, which was carrying 125 passengers at the time of the crash.  There were no injuries reported onboard the train.

The Peach Tree Soils crossing, which is a private railroad crossing with no signals or railroad gates, had already been scheduled to receive public funding to improve the crossing’s safety –including installing devices to warn drivers who cross the tracks of oncoming trains.   According to the Ventura County Transportation Commission, two other private railroad crossings have already been improved thanks to public funding in the past five years.

This is a terrible tragedy and I offer my deepest sympathies to Mr. Tillery’s loved ones in this time of loss.

If you have lost a loved one in a train accident, I encourage you to contact compassionate, veteran personal injury and wrongful death attorneys to learn more about your legal options.  Our experienced attorneys expertly determine whether another entity is responsible for your losses, and will fight to obtain compensation for funeral expenses as well as pain and suffering.  Law Office of Renee J. Nordstrand offers confidential, free consultations.