Earlier this month, a Haralson Superior Court jury handed down what is being billed by local attorneys as the largest compensory damages verdict in the county’s history.
On Aug. 16, Haralson County Superior Court Judge Michael Murphy signed the verdict, awarding the plaintiff, Bryan Robert Hill, more than $2.5 million in a civil action lawsuit against Eric Darin Pollard and Sandra Wade.
“My client feels that justice has been done,” said attorney for the plaintiff, Wright Gammon, with Gammon, Anderson and McFall Attorneys at Law.
The case revolved around an incident which occurred on June 10, 2009, when police were called to Hill’s residence at 652 Friendship Rd. in reference to an altercation.
According to police reports, Hill’s parents, Wanda and Jerry Hill, heard gun shots coming from their son’s home. When they arrived, reports say the Hills found their son lying on the ground with gunshot wounds to both his legs and severe trauma to his face and head. According to the incident report Eric Pollard and Danny Pollard were seen leaving the scene, and Eric Pollard called 911 “stating that he had killed the boy and wanted to turn himself in.”
Eric and Danny Pollard were charged with aggravated battery and aggravated assault in Haralson Superior Court on Aug. 18, 2009. They were both found guilty in 2011 and sentenced to prison terms. Eric Pollard was sentenced to 40 years, with no more than 20 to be served in prison. Danny Pollard was sentenced to 30 years, with no more than 10 to be served in prison. Once out of prison, the remainder of their sentences will be served under state supervision, such as parole.
The court also ordered that Bryan Hill be awarded $11,384.74 in restitution. However, Hill’s attorney said this amount would not cover his medical expenses, and Eric Pollard deeded his assets to an outside party. “Conveying the realty by Deed of Gift […] therefore constitutes a fraud committed against the plaintiff,” according to the original civil suit filed in Haralson County Superior Court May 12, 2011. The complaint states that the defendants were conspiring “to defraud the plaintiff of collecting his rightful debt” and had “thereby subjected themselves to punitive damages.”
The law suit in its final form named those defendants as Eric Pollard and Sandra Wade, Pollard’s power of attorney.
In the final judgement, the Superior Court jury awarded Hill $1,841,081.98 in compensatory damages for personal injury, $75,000 compensatory damages for fraudulent conveyance, $250,000 punitive damages for the intentional nature of the defendant’s conduct and $15,000 in attorney’s fees to be collected from Pollard. The remaining $340,000, according to the verdict, the plaintiff will have the right to collect from Wade, representing $75,000 damages for fraudulent conveyance, $250,000 punitive damages and $15,000 in attorney’s fees.
Attorney Gammon says his client still suffers from the after effects of that day in 2009.
“He has suffered a great deal of damage to his leg. He still has limited mobility in his foot, and he suffers from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder,” Gammon said. “We said we would take it to the jury and let them decide, and they did. I’m proud the jury felt the way they did about this kind of conduct in their county.”