Jodi Nofsinger, a Berman & Simmons attorney who represents the parents of a Maine teenager killed during a haunted hayride last October, was interviewed by the Lewiston Sun Journal for a story that appeared in today’s newspaper.
The article focused on the insurance policies covering Harvest Hill Farms. The business has been charged with manslaughter for the death of 17-year-old Cassidy Charette, an honor student and athlete at Messalonskee High School in Oakland, Maine.
Nofsinger told the Sun Journal that it’s rare in Maine for a corporation to be charged with a criminal offense, but it does happen occasionally. The U.S. Supreme Court established that corporations are legal people and, therefore, can be charged with crimes. For obvious reasons, the penalties for corporations that are found guilty in criminal cases are financial and administrative penalties, rather than imprisonment.
The Maine Attorney General’s Office cited two manslaughter cases against corporations filed in this state: one in York County in 1991, the other in Cumberland County in 1993. Nofsinger said Berman & Simmons was involved in the 1991 case: State v. Moores Neron Inc. A worker on a construction project on a bridge spanning the Piscataqua River had died. The construction company was acquitted of a manslaughter charge at trial.