#2. A Man Sues the Widow of the Man He Murdered for Not Letting Him Go to His Preferred Jail
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Larry Shandola is the living embodiment of the phrase "With friends like this, who needs enemies?" Way back in the day, Shandola was friends with Robert Henry, and the two even got chummy enough to start a joint business venture together. In 1995, said venture sadly failed, and Shandola reacted in the most mature manner he knew how: by shooting Henry to death with a shotgun.
"Now, the failed venture is mine and mine alone. I'm rich!"
Shandola was sentenced to 31 years in prison, so Henry's family figured that would be the end of their nightmare. But 18 years after murdering Henry, Shandola decided the time was right to sue Henry's family.
Shandola sued Henry's widow, Paula, and three others for $100,000 apiece.
His reasoning made every last bit of sense in the world -- he wanted to transfer to a Canadian prison, since that's where he's from. Henry's widow, Paula, had written a letter to the court asking that his request be denied.
"We couldn't save my husband from this madman. But I can save Canada."
In Shandola's lawsuit, he claimed that Paula Henry invaded his privacy and intentionally caused emotional distress by not allowing him to serve his sentence in his home country. This is understandable -- Shandola was locked up in Washington State, which is right on the border of Canada. He probably smelled the maple syrup in the air and got nostalgic. Also, we're guessing he assumed that the four walls he'd be staring at every day in Canada would be prettier and softer to the touch than the four walls he was staring at every day in Washington.
The judge, as judges are wont to do in these situations, dismissed the case. However, he didn't just dismiss it; he ordered Shandola to pay Paula Henry, and the three others, $10,000 apiece, or $40,000 total. That might seem like an awful lot to ask of a guy who hasn't had a job in close to 20 years, but in cases like this, it's the thought that counts.
#1. A Man Kills a Child Riding His Bike, Then Sues the Child's Parents
David Weaving was driving around on April 26, 2007, when he struck 14-year-old Matthew Kenney, who was riding his bike at the time. The collision proved to be fatal, and Kenney died shortly thereafter. As a result, Weaving was sentenced to 10 years in prison, avoiding more time since he was actually sober during the accident (quite the rare feat for a man with five drunk driving arrests on his record, four of which resulted in convictions).
"I just wanted to prove I could be dangerously irresponsible without alcohol."
The boy's parents, deciding that 10 years in prison wasn't enough for a guy who probably shouldn't have had a license in the first place, sued Weaving for criminal negligence, and $15,000. Weaving, for the second time proving that he didn't need alcohol to be a douche, responded with a $15,000 countersuit of his own, which he wrote by hand (probably in crayon).
In the filing, Weaving accused the parents of negligence, which is basically the legal version of "I know you are, but what am I?" His rationale: Matthew Kenney was not wearing a helmet, and his parents were to blame for allowing him to ride without one. Going by that logic, he should've also sued for their daring to conceive him in the first place. After all, if he had never lived, he never would've been killed.
He also claimed Kenney's inheritance as his own, having "fairly bested the boy in a duel."
In the suit, Weaving also claimed that Kenney jumped his bike off a ramp and landed in the middle of the road like he was Evel Knievel. Also, Kenney did this while suddenly appearing in the middle of a foggy road, because he was such a bastard like that. Although it's actually quite understandable that Weaving couldn't see Kenney, especially since he was going close to 90 miles per hour at the time. Shit gets blurry by that point.
The judge ultimately stated that, while he agreed with Weaving's right to sue, he also believed that Weaving was a goddamned moron, and determined him to be recklessly negligent after all. What do you know, the system works.
Matt Pass is a standup comedian. Follow him on Twitter if you only liked the first 140 characters of this article, email him at firstname.lastname@example.org, or learn about his weekly Philadelphia comedy show.
Related Reading: This article was kind of a bummer. Pick your mood up with some cases of criminals instantly repaid by karma. Watch that mugger get hit by a bus and bask in the glow of random justice. Then read about badass criminals caught in embarrassing ways. Eric Rudolph- a real-life terrorist version of Rambo, wound up arrested while dumpster diving in the wee dawn hours. Last, boost your faith with a look at ruthless criminals who turned good when no one was looking.