Published on July 31, 2022 at 14:08 IST
US-based cable company Charter Spectrum has been ordered to pay $7.37 billion in INR ₹58,400 crore as damages to the family of an 83-year-old Betty Thomas who was stabbed to death in her home by its employee in year 2019. Charter was found 90% responsible for the murder. It was also found that Charter had hired the employee without verifying his employment history.
Reportedly Roy James Holden, an installer for Spectrum, owned by Charter Communications, had performed work at Thomas’ home in Irving in December 2019.
Prosecutors submitted to the jury that Holden returned the next day in uniform and using the company’s van while he was off, posing as if he was on the job, and killed her, then used her cards for a shopping spree after her murder.
In June, a Dallas County jury found Charter Communications negligent and grossly negligent in Thomas’ death.
The jury awarded a verdict of $375 million in compensatory damages and said the company was responsible for paying 90% of it after the trial revealed “systemic failures” in the company’s pre-employee screening, hiring and supervision practices.
Verdict for $7.37 billion punitive damages was announced.
Thomas family in the case, said, “This was a shocking breach of faith by a company that sends workers inside millions of homes every year.”
“The jury in this case was thoughtful and attentive to the evidence. This verdict justly reflects the extensive evidence regarding the nature of the harm caused by Charter Spectrum’s gross negligence and reckless misconduct. For the safety of the American public, we can only hope that Charter Spectrum and its shareholders are listening.”