Cable Company Spectrum to Pay $7.3 Billion in Damages in Stabbing Case

A jury in Texas hit cable company Spectrum with $7.3 billion in damages for its part in the 2019 robbery and murder of an 83-year-old woman by one of its field technicians.

The jury in a Dallas County Court added $7 billion in punitive damages on July 26 to an earlier $377 million compensatory damages verdict in the stabbing case.

In June, the jury found Charter Communications, which also operates as Spectrum, liable for the killing of Betty Thomas in her Irving home by company employee Roy Holden in December 2019.

Last year, Holden pleaded guilty to the crime and the court sentenced him to life in prison.

“This was a shocking breach of faith by a company that sends workers inside millions of homes every year,” trial lawyer Chris Hamilton of Dallas-based Hamilton Wingo said in a statement on July 26, as quoted by Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

“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,” Hamilton further said.

Spectrum said it will appeal the verdict.

“The responsibility for this horrible act rests solely with Mr. Holden, who was not on duty, and we are grateful he is in prison for life. While we respect the jury and the justice system, we strongly disagree with the verdict and will appeal,” Spectrum said in a statement.

“The law in Texas and the facts presented at trial clearly show this crime was not foreseeable — and the plaintiffs’ claims of wrongdoing by Charter are categorically false,” Spectrum also said.

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