Donald J. O’Brien, Jr.: Representative Cases
- Thomas v. Page: Special assignment to Kane County for trial of defamation case brought by Chief Justice of the Illinois Supreme Court against a local newspaper. Resulted in the largest verdict in the history of Kane County at the time.
- In Re Chicago Flood Litigation: Handled all aspects of nine cases, involving approximately 400 claimants. Cases involved flooding of underground tunnel due to alleged negligence in driving a piling in the Chicago River. Flooding shut down the central loop for approximately ten days. Cases eventually settled for an amount exceeding $250 million.
- Jean Frigo v. Silver Cross Hospital and Medical Center: Illinois case of first impression involving hospital’s negligent credentialing of doctors. It resulted in a multi-million dollar verdict for the plaintiff. Affirmed on appeal.
- Michael Burgus et al. v. Rush Presbyeterian St. Lukes: Medical malpractice case involving a psychiatrist negligently treating a patient with multiple personality disorder. Under the psychiatrist’s care for six years, plaintiff underwent hypnosis, was prescribed heavy medication, and was hospitalized for more than two years in Rush’s ten-bed dissociative disorders unit, believing she was in a “satanic cult.” Her young children were also hospitalized for three years. Plaintiff claimed the unorthodox treatment caused her false beliefs. Resulted in a settlement of $10.6 million for the plaintiff. The case was featured in a national news magazine and an episode of the PBS documentary series, Frontline, was devoted to the case.
- Levenberg v. McDonnell-Douglas et al: Consolidated cases brought by survivors and decedents of United Airlines flight 232 plane crash against United Airlines, Inc.; McDonnell-Douglas Corp., plane manufacturer; and General Electric Co., engine maker. Tried to a jury and returned a $23 million verdict.
- Clarendon v. Standard Co. et al: Case involved the largest fire in the city of Chicago since McCormick Place burned down. It was alleged that Standard’s fire suppression system was defective, which allowed the fire to spread to adjoining buildings. Resulted in a multi-million dollar verdict for the plaintiff.