A. Darlington County South Carolina jury has returned a $9 million verdict against Progress Energy
The verdict rose out of the death of Allen Toney a 21 year old who was killed by electricution from a downed powerline at his home.
The verdict consisted of $3.5 million in actual damages to Mr. Tony's mother and 5.5 million in punitive damages.
The evidence showed that Progress Energy had ignored the numerous inspection notifications of the hazardous conditions of the utility pole months before the victim's death. The evidence showed that progress energy failed to respond to numerous phone calls made to its Emergency Call Center after a storm and before the electrocution.
Progress energy therefore had numerous notifications and warnings about the dangers condition of the downed powerline. Because Progress Energy negligently ignored the dangerous and deadly condition, the court allowed the jury to consider punitive damages.