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Animation Connects Three Hospitalizations to Grocery Store‚Äôs ADA-Noncompliant Handicap Parking

Asphalt protruded from a grocery store’s handicap loading zone, creating an uneven surface. Consequently, an immunocompromised boy named R.M. fell after his wheelchair toppled over the defect. He landed on the hot, dirty ground, resulting in a life-threatening infection and three back-to-back hospitalizations. To overcome the challenge of connecting causation to the fall, Steven Chavez of Chavez Law Firm P.C. enlisted DK Global to create an animation that helped attain a confidential settlement for the boy.

12-year-old R.M. lived with Duchenne muscular dystrophy. On the day of the fall, as R.M. approached the grocery store’s loading zone secured tightly to his wheelchair, its wheels caught on the bumpy asphalt, causing him to tumble forward. The impact scraped his hips, knees, and face. An ambulance rushed R.M. to the emergency room. While he was discharged that night, a rare bacterium from the floor entered his hip abrasions, causing septic shock two days later.

R.M. was taken back to the hospital and admitted into the ICU. Doctors prescribed a high-dose steroid regimen to treat his infection and monitored him for 18 days. R.M. was released but returned yet again three weeks later after complaints of painful headaches, vision blur, and confusion. Unfortunately, the consecutive health emergencies triggered steroid-induced diabetes.

After the first fall, R.M.’s mother contacted Steven Chavez of Chavez Law Firm P.C.. Steven filed the claim and sent preservation letters to the grocery store, requesting all documentation and footage of the incident. Then, he reviewed and thoroughly organized R.M.’s mountain of medical records. Steven anticipated difficulty proving how his client’s hospitalizations originated from the grocery store’s ill-constructed handicap parking zone.

To help him explain the nuances of the incident, Steven sought help from several experts, including a construction defect engineer, a pediatric infectious disease physician, and a pediatric endocrinologist. Then, he brought on DK Global to collaborate with his team to create an expert-led presentation, outlining the succession of events.

The presentation began with the grocery store’s surveillance video capturing R.M.’s fall from behind. Then, it transitioned into a front-view animation, displaying the mechanism of his injuries as he fell forward. Photos of the asphalt showed a 1.25-inch height difference from the concrete surface. Next, the demonstrative cut to R.M. unconscious in the pediatric critical care unit after the infection caused septic shock. His medical records were displayed and highlighted, detailing the high-dose steroid regimen used to cure his infection. Tragically, the medication that saved him developed into a permanent, life-altering health disorder. Last, the video concluded with a domino metaphor summarizing R.M.’s decline, illustrating how the traumatic and consecutive hospitalizations stemmed from the grocery store’s ADA-noncompliant parking lot.

Steven shared the animation with the Defense before mediation. As a result, the opposing counsel offered a favorable confidential settlement for R.M. and his family.

For over 26 years, Steven M. Chavez has been advocating for catastrophic injury survivors in the New Mexico community, beginning his legal career as an Assistant District Attorney in Valencia County. Since 2002, Steven has consulted local municipalities regarding their legal affairs and has handled numerous wrongful death, civil rights, and personal injury matters. Steven takes pride in devoting himself to a select number of cases.

Asphalt protruded from a grocery store’s handicap loading zone, creating an uneven surface. Consequently, an immunocompromised boy named R.M. fell after his wheelchair toppled over the defect. He landed on the hot, dirty ground, resulting in a life-threatening infection and three back-to-back hospitalizations. To overcome the challenge of connecting causation to the fall, Steven Chavez of Chavez Law Firm P.C. enlisted DK Global to create an animation that helped attain a confidential settlement for the boy.
12-year-old R.M. lived with Duchenne muscular dystrophy. On the day of the fall, as R.M. approached the grocery store’s loading zone secured tightly to his wheelchair, its wheels caught on the bumpy asphalt, causing him to tumble forward. The impact scraped his hips, knees, and face. An ambulance rushed R.M. to the emergency room. While he was discharged that night, a rare bacterium from the floor entered his hip abrasions, causing septic shock two days later.
R.M. was taken back to the hospital and admitted into the ICU. Doctors prescribed a high-dose steroid regimen to treat his infection and monitored him for 18 days. R.M. was released but returned yet again three weeks later after complaints of painful headaches, vision blur, and confusion. Unfortunately, the consecutive health emergencies triggered steroid-induced diabetes.
After the first fall, R.M.’s mother contacted Steven Chavez of Chavez Law Firm P.C.. Steven filed the claim and sent preservation letters to the grocery store, requesting all documentation and footage of the incident. Then, he reviewed and thoroughly organized R.M.’s mountain of medical records. Steven anticipated difficulty proving how his client’s hospitalizations originated from the grocery store’s ill-constructed handicap parking zone.
To help him explain the nuances of the incident, Steven sought help from several experts, including a construction defect engineer, a pediatric infectious disease physician, and a pediatric endocrinologist. Then, he brought on DK Global to collaborate with his team to create an expert-led presentation, outlining the succession of events.
The presentation began with the grocery store’s surveillance video capturing R.M.’s fall from behind. Then, it transitioned into a front-view animation, displaying the mechanism of his injuries as he fell forward. Photos of the asphalt showed a 1.25-inch height difference from the concrete surface. Next, the demonstrative cut to R.M. unconscious in the pediatric critical care unit after the infection caused septic shock. His medical records were displayed and highlighted, detailing the high-dose steroid regimen used to cure his infection. Tragically, the medication that saved him developed into a permanent, life-altering health disorder. Last, the video concluded with a domino metaphor summarizing R.M.’s decline, illustrating how the traumatic and consecutive hospitalizations stemmed from the grocery store’s ADA-noncompliant parking lot.
Steven shared the animation with the Defense before mediation. As a result, the opposing counsel offered a favorable confidential settlement for R.M. and his family.
For over 26 years, Steven M. Chavez has been advocating for catastrophic injury survivors in the New Mexico community, beginning his legal career as an Assistant District Attorney in Valencia County. Since 2002, Steven has consulted local municipalities regarding their legal affairs and has handled numerous wrongful death, civil rights, and personal injury matters. Steven takes pride in devoting himself to a select number of cases.

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"Animating the multiple layers of events wasn't an easy task. DK Global was able to put it all together in a visually cohesive manner."
Steven M. Chavez - Chavez Law Firm




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