Palm Beach County

(27) LINDA CAMBERDELLA, individually, and as Personal Representative of the ESTATE OF MICHAEL CAMBERDELLA; IRVING CAMBERDELLA, individually, and as Guardians and Natural Parents of N.C., a Minor, vs. PALM BEACH COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE, RIC L. BRADSHAW, in his official capacity as Sheriff of Palm Beach County, Florida, MICHAEL W. GOLDSTEIN, in his individual capacity (United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida, West Palm Beach Division)

County/Docket #/Judge: Palm Beach / 9:14cv81258 / Donald M. Middlebrooks

Plaintiff(s) Attorney(s): Sean Christopher Domnick and Jennifer Marie Lipinski of Domnick, Cunningham, et al., Palm Beach Gardens, FL; Stuart N. Kaplan of Kaplan, Sconzo, et al., P. A., Palm Beach Gardens, FL 

Defendant(s) Attorney(s): Richard A. Giuffreda of Purdy, Jolly, et al., P.A., Fort Lauderdale, FL; Gary K. Oldehoff and Harriet R. Lewis of Lewis, Stroud, et al., P.L., Boca Raton, FL

Age/Sex/Occupation Of Plaintiff: 18 / M / n/a

Cause Of Injury: Wrongful Death/Civil Rights/Fatal Police Shooting of Autistic Teen. On Oct. 4, 2012, 18-year-old Michael Camberdella was suffering from autism and bi-polar disorder and had not taken prescribed medication. His mother, Linda Camberdella, called police for assistance and told the dispatcher that Michael had a hammer, had choked her, and would be dangerous to anyone that responded. Deputy William Goldstein responded and ordered Michael to drop gardening shears and a rubber hammer. Michael complied with that order. Deputy Goldstein then ordered him to go to the ground. Michael allegedly began to run at him, and Deputy Goldstein subsequently fired 11 bullets at Michael, one of which penetrated his heart and caused his death.

Plaintiffs, Linda and Irving Camberdella, on behalf of themselves, Michael’s estate, and minor N.C., filed a complaint against Palm Beach County; Rich Bradshaw, in his official capacity as Sheriff of Palm Beach County, Florida; and Michael Goldstein, in his individual capacity in the Circuit Court of Palm Beach County, FL. A second amended complaint asserted claims of wrongful death; negligent infliction of emotional distress; violation of civil rights under 42 U.S.C.S. § 1983; negligent use of a firearm; and violation of Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Plaintiffs claimed that Deputy Goldstein escalated the situation unnecessarily, should have waited for back up, and used deadly force that was not warranted. Plaintiffs further claimed that Palm Beach County had a policy and practice of using excessive force. Defendants removed the action to the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida, West Palm Beach Division, on Oct. 10, 2014. On June 04, 2015, Judge Donald Middlebrooks denied, in part, defendants' motion for summary judgment on the basis of immunity. That decision was affirmed on appeal. According to an article in the Sun Sentinel, the parties settled the matter on Oct. 19, 2016, for $1,700,000. 

Nature Of Injury: Death.

Expert Witnesses:

Steve Ijames, Police Procedures, Springfield, MO

Settlement: $1,700,000 on Oct. 19, 2016.