Desley Brooks is naughty, jury finds; awards $3.5m to Black Panther icon for injuries

Oakland Councilmember Desley Brooks

Oakland Councilmember Desley Brooks is one of the most notoriously feared elected officials in the East Bay. Her reputation, though, is growing at the expense of Oakland taxpayers after an Alameda County Superior Court jury Thursday found Brooks assaulted former Black Panther icon Elaine Brown at a well-known downtown restaurant in October 2015.

The jury awarded Brown $3.5 million in damages with possibly more to come, according to the San Francisco Chronicle. The court may levy additional punitive damages next month.

In a episode that quickly became infamous in Oakland politics, Brooks, in an official city capacity, according to the jury, met with Brown and others at the Everett & Jones barbecue joint near Jack London Square.

Brooks, 54, though, become incensed, and according to the jury, pushed Brown, then 74, with two fists to the chest. The shove led Brown to tumble and caused her injuries, including a torn rotator-cuff. The act is deemed as elder abuse, said the jury, the Chronicle reported.

The decision, which could still be appealed, is also a major defeat for the Oakland City Attorney’s office. The city had originally balked at a $1 million settlement offer from Brown’s lawyers.

6 thoughts on “Desley Brooks is naughty, jury finds; awards $3.5m to Black Panther icon for injuries

  1. MW, not sure what you are thinking here. Look at the facts of the case. Brooks assaulted Brown, an old lady. Brooks should be in jail for 25 years and paying through the nose for the pain and suffering from Brooks. I just hope that it is the insurance companies that pay all the bills and not the taxpayer.


  2. MW, This was a civil case. The City's lawyers and Brook's lawyers are the ones that blew it, not Brown's. Her lawyers did a good job. I can only hope that they get paid, not by our tax dollars but out of the hide of Brooks. She needs to pay up, shut up, and quit. I we are lucky if she declares bankruptcy and becomes homeless she can walk the streets in Alameda looking for a hand out.


  3. By MW:

    Related to my above post, there are many instances in which if somebody had a problem, as far as getting a solution to that problem, you would be much better off going for a walk and asking the first total stranger you met for advice how to solve the problem than going to a lawyer for advice, since moat lawyers are not interested in solving problems, but only in making them many times worse and much more complicated, since that way lawyers make a lot more money.


  4. By MW:

    According to this article, it sounds like Oakland could have settled out of court for one million or less. (In other words even if Brown's lawyers had asked for one million even to drop the lawsuit and settle out of court, it is quite likely that if the city had indicated a sincere interest in settling out of of court, that it could have eventually been settled for 500K or less, and possibly even much less than that.)

    However lawyers love to make little problems into huge problems and to “prove” how extremely “useful” and “valuable” they are, and some of the ways they do that are by: one, making little problems into huge and extremely expensive problems; two. totally screwing up virtually everything they touch; and three, dragging things out so that can keep themselves employed and bill for as many hours as possible.


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