Attorneys on partial verdict in Sines v. Kessler trial
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (CBS19 NEWS) -- The jury reached a partial verdict in the Sines v. Kessler trial Tuesday afternoon, on its third day of deliberations.
"We are so grateful for everyone hanging in with us and supporting our plaintiffs,” said Karen Dunn, an attorney for the plaintiffs.
The fate of 24 white nationalists was in the hands of 11 jurors, and while the jury was not able to come to a unanimous vote on two out of six counts, but it did award large sums of money.
The trial totaled roughly $25 million in compensatory and punitive damages. Compensatory damages are awarded to plaintiffs for their injuries. Punitive damages are considered punishment for defendants.
All 24 defendants were assessed $11 million in punitive damages.
The jury also found James Fields, Jr. liable for the plaintiffs' emotional distress. He's been individually assessed $12 million total in damages.
Plaintiffs have been awarded more than $700,000 total in compensation.
"Our goal was to come here and prove a conspiracy to do racially motivated violence, as to each and every defendant, and to get damages awards, compensatory and punitive, and we did all of those things,” Dunn said.
"I don't know how the plaintiffs are going to get anything for any of this, but plaintiffs' council should have known that, and they did know that when they brought the suit. They probably should've sued the city of Charlottesville, the Charlottesville Police Department and others," said attorney for the defense Joshua Smith.
Attorney for the plaintiffs Roberta Kaplan says their effort is not finished.
"Those claims are open and we fully intend on re-trying them. We're just going to have to do it after Thanksgiving 2021,” Kaplan said.
Defendant Jason Kessler’s attorney James Kolenich also acknowledged a possible re-trial.
"I definitely respect the job the jurors did, but lawyers have jobs too, and we're going to do what we can to cut this down to size. I guess we'll have round two of the first two claims,” Kolenich said.