Day 1 - Fessler vs. Watchtower – Opening Statements and Motions in Jehovah’s Witness Child Abuse Trial
A motion must have went Watchtower's way and the plaintiff's attorney probably recommended getting something is better than getting nothing in the long run.
"A motion must have went Watchtower's way and the plaintiff's attorney probably recommended getting something is better than getting nothing in the long run. "
Richard Oliver, what makes you say that?
Indeed, if a motion had gone the Watchtower's way, why on earth would they settle out of court??? Surely they would make a point that would remove all doubt that they are innocent?
This recalls cases in which famous defendants have settled out of court because it did not look good for them. Example: Michael Jackson facing pedophilia charges settled out of court with at least two plaintiffs.
I think thing we're going to go bad for WT but an appeal was going to be on the works so the victim was advised by her attorney to take a settlement offer.
Watchtower made an offer before this even went to court. The Plaintiff rejected it and wanted to go to trial. So it is easy to assume that something changed on the plaintiff's side and not on Watchtower's side.
.....or maybe the amount to settle got larger...
Case has been settled for an undisclosed amount. Neither side is allowed to comment on it.
Sorry didn't see previous comments
It could be that she was offered more money. It could also be that her attorney saw something that he didn't like in the case and decided that the best move was to get something rather than nothing. It could be any number of things, even including a decision in a separate appeals case that the attorney thinks that could affect this case.
Does anyone know if there was more than just opening statements given or was there any actual testimony given?
OR the case was so full of evidence that WT could not stand to have revealed. So they kept increasing the offer until the victim could not resist accepting.
I agree, the offer could have gone higher. I am speculating just like everyone else. But just as it may have been higher the chances that it was the same amount that was originally offered is there too.
"Watchtower made an offer before this even went to court. The Plaintiff rejected it and wanted to go to trial. So it is easy to assume that something changed on the plaintiff's side and not on Watchtower's side."
Richard Oliver your reasoning is facile and you take a view that suggests a naive view of how out-of-court settlements emerge. More tellingly, you show, once again - but on a different thread - a poor comprehension of the sexual abuse victim's experience.
Firstly, the fact that the defendant made an offer before this went to trial strongly suggests that the Watchtower lawyers realized a verdict in their favour was unlikely. Defendants who have strong cases never propose out-of-court settlements.
Secondly, it is not at all unusual for plaintiffs to change their mind about out-of-court settlements once the trial is either about to proceed or underway, particularly for sexual abuse trials. It has little to do with the likelihood of a favourable verdict and more to do with not wanting to go through a significantly re-traumatizing process. Sexual abuse victims often underestimate what it will require to get through a court trial - and find that when they are in court, confronted by a defense attorney who has virtually cast them as "liars" (The Watchtower lawyer reiterated several times in the Opening Address, "She did not tell the truth"), it is easier to agree to an out-of-court settlement.
The question of whether she was offered more - or less - is open to pure speculation. In some cases, more is offered and in some, less (as in "We give you 4 hours to accept this reduced offer or we'll see you back in Court"). When a plaintiff has been undermined in court by the defense, she may now be more vulnerable and herself pressure her lawyers to agree, or alternatively her own lawyers may fear for her safety and persuade her to settle.
The fact, though, is due to the confidentiality of the settlement, we will likely never know whether she was offered a greater or lesser sum and/or the reasons for agreeing to settle out-of-court.