• April 15, 2016

5702272215_e35e51f380_zThe Star Tribune reported the verdict in this civil lawsuit today. It seems like it all started with Mr. Riehm’s wife complimenting the looks of the fiancée of Mr. Riehm’s eventual victim, Mr. Daniel Kerkinni. From that fairly benign interaction, undoubtedly with a big boost from the alcohol-fueled impulsivity pump, Mr. Riehm, apparently under the impression that the Mr. Kerkinni punched his wife in the face at some point, stabbed Kerkinni in the chest with a steak knife.

The Star Tribune reports:

Roughly $180,000 of the money awarded by the jury is for [the victim’s] medical expenses, with smaller amounts for ‘pain, disability and emotional distress’ and loss of earnings. There’s also a $25,000 punitive judgment against Riehm.

Why won’t the Star Tribune link to the verdict form? Why so unclear on what amount the verdict is actually for? Why set out the medical expense amount but not the amount for pain and suffering? Is it just me or does that seem pretty cheap for a stab to the chest? How much would you charge someone to inflict an injury like that on you?

As for Riehm, regular Minnesota Litigators might remember that he showed up in a June, 2012 post:

Slimed Person cropped SLIMEOriginally posted June 28, 2012 (and slightly revised): Minnesota Litigator Practice Pointer:  If you are going to be a sleazy slime, go all the way, be sure to include a visit to a strip club. (See Linked Complaint, Para. 3, 57-58).   Note: these are only allegations.But Super Lawyer, Timothy G. Bailey, counsel for Defendant Michael Riehm, has some explaining to do if the sworn allegations are truthful.

Seriously, the complaint gives a good primer on the nature of contingent fee work, ethics with regard to referral fees, and sleaze.  Reading between the lines of the complaint, the defense would appear to be that Attorney Riehm assumed that all referrals to him were matters that TSR did not wish to handle, rather than TSR “assets,” in a sense, that were wrongfully diverted to Riehm by corrupted TSR associates. (And strip clubs, while sleazy, are legal.)  The case was assigned to Hennepin County District Judge Susan Robiner.

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