Appeal In Wrongful Death Case.
On December 19th at 1:30 p.m. Corey Quinton and Tyler Carlson argued an appeal involving the Sadek v. Weber, et al case to the North Dakota Supreme Court. The Sadek case involved the disappearance and death of a college student who was found in the Red River with a bullet wound to his head. Prior to his disappearance he had, unbeknownst to anyone, been working as a confidential informant for a regional drug task force. Plaintiff’s theory is that Andrew’s death was a direct and proximate result of his work as a confidential informant. The trial court had granted our client’s Motion for Summary Judgment dismissing the case in its entirety on the grounds that no facts existed as to proximate causation. An appeal was taken as to the dismissal. The five justices of North Dakota’s highest court listened to the plaintiffs argue that the trial court had been in error and that there were fact questions which precluded summary judgment. Corey argued, as he had to the trial court, that the undisputed facts demonstrated that there was no evidence, admissible or otherwise, to suggest a link between Andrew Sadek’s disappearance and death and his work with our client as a confidential informant. The appeal generated national media attention and the case will likely be decided within the next two to three months.
FBS Attorneys Corey Quinton & Tyler Carlson Succeed on Summary Judgment Defending Richland County and Deputy Weber in a Wrongful Death Case.
On May 1, 2014, college student Andrew Sadek was seen leaving his dorm in the early morning hours. On June 27, 2014, his body was found in the Red River with a bullet wound to the head. Prior to his disappearance, Mr. Sadek had been acting as a confidential informant for a drug task force after selling marijuana to other confidential informants on two occasions. His contact with the drug task force was Richland County Deputy Weber. His parents brought suit against Deputy Weber and Richland County alleging fraud, deceit and negligence based on the assumption that Mr. Sadek had been murdered due to his acting as a confidential informant. His story and alleged murder garnered national media attention including a segment on 60 Minutes. Corey Quinton and Tyler Carlson of our office defended the case and after nearly three years of litigation brought a Motion for Summary Judgment. The court ruled on May 20, 2019, agreeing with and adopting almost all of our arguments and dismissing all three causes of action alleged by the Plaintiff’s. In particular, the court found that the fraud claim were inapplicable because the contract remedies available for fraud did not apply to this case. The deceit claims were dismissed as the only misrepresentation alleged by the plaintiff’s (that Deputy Weber had told Sadek that there was a good possibility he would get jail time) was a prediction as to future events which is not actionable under North Dakota law. As to the negligence claim, the court found that the record did not support a finding of proximate causation as a matter of law. The case may be appealed to the North Dakota Supreme Court.
Fisher Bren & Sheridan LLP is excited to welcome new Associate Attorneys, Dong Lee and Daniel Berlinger, to the firm.
Dong will be practicing in all areas of civil litigation. He earned his J.D. with a concentration in civil litigation from the University of Minnesota Law School. There, he represented clients as a licensed student attorney and supervised other student attorneys as a student director in the Robins Kaplan Civil Practice Clinic. He was also a managing editor of the Minnesota Journal of International Law where he earned the Outstanding Editor Award. After graduating law school, he worked in the chambers of the Honorable Mary R. Vasaly and the Honorable Bruce A. Peterson, Judges of the Fourth Judicial District Court. Dong is a member of the Minnesota State Bar, the American Bar Association, Hennepin County Bar Association, Minnesota State Bar Association, and Minnesota Asian Pacific American Bar Association.
Daniel will also practice in all areas of civil litigation. He is graduate of Rollins College and earned his J.D. from the University Of St. Thomas School of Law. During law school, he was the publications editor of the University of St. Thomas Law Journal, participated in the school’s bankruptcy litigation clinic, and he served as the Student Government Treasurer. After graduating law school, Dan worked as a law clerk to the Honorable Regina M. Chu, Judge of the Fourth Judicial District Court in Minnesota. Dan currently serves on the Cardozo Society Steering Committee.
John E. Varpness has joined Fisher Bren and Sheridan LLP as a Partner in the firm’s Minneapolis office. For more than 39 years, John has represented clients in the State and Federal courts in Minnesota and Wisconsin. John brings extensive experience to clients in the areas of products liability, personal injury, business, construction, and environmental litigation.
Brian Steffes and Amy Sieben recently obtained a $2,506,705 judgment on behalf of a general contractor client following a 2 week jury trial.