This week’s article will focus on the trial and conviction of former Uber driver, Syed Abid Muzaffar, for the charge of vehicular manslaughter arising out of the December 31, 2013, death of 7-year-old Sophia Liu as she was walking home from her grandmother’s house with her mother Huan, and brother, Anthony. As they were lawfully crossing Polk while traveling east on Ellis, Muzaffar turned right crushing Sophia and catastrophically injuring Huan and Anthony. Huan testified that just before being run-down she saw Muzzafar looking down at his cell phone, presumably checking his Uber app. At the time of Sophia’s death Uber first claimed that Muzzafar was not acting as an Uber driver then, later, admitted that he had the app open but sought to continue to distance themselves from the tragedy by saying that he had no passenger onboard.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MOTHER OF YOUNG GIRL KILLED BY UBER DRIVER GRATEFUL FOR JUSTICE
On August 2, 2018, former Uber driver Syed Abid Muzaffar was found guilty of vehicular manslaughter by a jury of 12 San Francisco citizens in the death of Sofia Liu. Muzaffar, while driving his vehicle on the evening of December 31, 2015 at the intersection of Polk and Ellis streets in San Francisco, turned right hitting Sofia, her mother and her brother who were crossing legally in a pedestrian crosswalk, crushing Sofia to death with his vehicle. Muzaffar was working as an Uber driver at the time of the incident.
Nate from Oakland writes: I know, of course, that police and fire trucks are entitled to speed down city streets with sirens and flashing lights when responding to emergencies. But I’m sure I’m not the only one to have also seen police cars slide through red traffic lights for no apparent reason. Is this legal? What are the rules of the road for emergency vehicles and what happens if someone is hurt by one, for example, running a red light?
Tom from Mill Valley asks: I heard something on the news about a recent US Supreme Court case upholding arbitration clauses in employment cases. What are arbitration clauses and how do they affect employees?
Women-focused organizations promoting co-working, networking, support, and other skills, to help women thrive in the workplace and other professional environments is facing backlash by men bringing lawsuits who say they are being unfairly excluded.
Usually, I use this column to answer questions. Today, I will discuss the death of Jahi McMath and the new legal issues stemming from Jahi having been pronounced dead in California on December 13, 2013 and again on June 22, 2018 in New Jersey.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
JAHI MCMATH HAS DIED IN NEW JERSEY
On June 22nd, 2018, Jahi Kelis McMath died peacefully in the presence of her mother Nailah and step father Marvin in a hospital in New Jersey. Jahi died as the result of complications associated with liver failure. Jahi had been living at home, with her mother Nailah Winkfield, her stepfather Marvin Winkfield, and younger sister in New Jersey for the last 4 years. She will be returned to California to be buried near her family and friends.
This week’s column expands on last week’s discussion of the implications of CalFire’s recent reports faulting PG&E for a dozen of last October’s wildfires. While last week I focused on the ramifications for direct victims of the firestorm, this week I will look at the broader impacts to the California public. Sadly, this topic feels more timely than ever as Northern California’s first major wildfire of year continues to burn out of control since it began in Lake County on Saturday.