Florida Senate - 2023                              (NP)    SB 18
       
       
        
       By Senator Jones
       
       
       
       
       
       35-00095-23                                             202318__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act for the relief of the Estate of Danielle
    3         Maudsley; providing an appropriation to compensate the
    4         estate for Ms. Maudsley’s death as a result of the
    5         alleged negligence of Trooper Daniel Cole and the
    6         Florida Highway Patrol, a division of the Department
    7         of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles; providing a
    8         limitation on the payment of compensation and attorney
    9         fees; providing an effective date.
   10  
   11         WHEREAS, on September 19, 2011, 20-year-old Danielle
   12  Maudsley was arrested for nonviolent traffic offenses and was
   13  subsequently taken to the Florida Highway Patrol substation in
   14  Pinellas Park for processing, and
   15         WHEREAS, during the processing, Ms. Maudsley, who was still
   16  handcuffed, attempted to flee, exiting the substation through a
   17  side door, and
   18         WHEREAS, as Ms. Maudsley exited the substation, Trooper
   19  Daniel Cole of the Florida Highway Patrol followed her outside,
   20  and
   21         WHEREAS, Trooper Cole removed his electronic control device
   22  and fired it directly into Ms. Maudsley’s back, causing her to
   23  collapse and fall to the parking lot pavement with great
   24  physical force and effect, and
   25         WHEREAS, as a result of these events, Ms. Maudsley suffered
   26  extensive traumatic brain injury and remained in a constant
   27  vegetative state until her death on September 15, 2013, and
   28         WHEREAS, in May 2015, a settlement agreement was entered
   29  into between Julie Goddard, as personal representative of the
   30  Estate of Danielle Maudsley, and the Florida Highway Patrol and
   31  Trooper Cole to settle all claims arising out of Ms. Maudsley’s
   32  death, and
   33         WHEREAS, the Florida Highway Patrol and Trooper Cole
   34  acknowledged that, if the case had gone to trial in the United
   35  States District Court for the Middle District of Florida, a jury
   36  could reasonably have awarded damages in the amount of $1.95
   37  million to the Estate of Danielle Maudsley, and
   38         WHEREAS, the settlement agreement required the Division of
   39  Risk Management of the Department of Financial Services to pay
   40  $200,000 to the Estate of Danielle Maudsley in accordance with
   41  the statutory limits of liability set forth in s. 768.28,
   42  Florida Statutes, and
   43         WHEREAS, Ms. Goddard, as personal representative of the
   44  Estate of Danielle Maudsley, seeks satisfaction of the remaining
   45  balance of the settlement agreement, which is $1.75 million,
   46  NOW, THEREFORE,
   47  
   48  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   49  
   50         Section 1. The facts stated in the preamble to this act are
   51  found and declared to be true.
   52         Section 2. The sum of $1.75 million is appropriated from
   53  the General Revenue Fund to the Department of Highway Safety and
   54  Motor Vehicles for the relief of the Estate of Danielle Maudsley
   55  for injuries and damages sustained as a result of the death of
   56  Danielle Maudsley.
   57         Section 3. The Chief Financial Officer is directed to draw
   58  a warrant payable to the Estate of Danielle Maudsley in the sum
   59  of $1.75 million, minus amounts required to satisfy outstanding
   60  Medicaid liens relating to the medical expenses and care of
   61  Danielle Maudsley, upon funds of the Department of Highway
   62  Safety and Motor Vehicles in the State Treasury and to pay the
   63  same out of such funds.
   64         Section 4. The amount paid by the Division of Risk
   65  Management of the Department of Financial Services in accordance
   66  with the statutory limits of liability set forth in s. 768.28,
   67  Florida Statutes, and the amount awarded under this act are
   68  intended to provide the sole compensation for all present and
   69  future claims arising out of the factual situation described in
   70  this act which resulted in the death of Danielle Maudsley. The
   71  total amount paid for attorney fees relating to this claim may
   72  not exceed 25 percent of the amount awarded under this act.
   73         Section 5. This act shall take effect upon becoming a law.