09-08-2013, 08:44 PM #1
Why didn't Max's parents file a civil wrongful death lawsuit?
The statute of limitations in California for civil wrongful death lawsuits is 2 years from the death of a person, or from the date that evidence of wrongful death is discovered.
California Code of Civil Procedure sections 377.60-377.62.
Dina Shacknai, for 2 years, has given countless media interviews stating she believes Rebecca Zahau and her minor sister were responsible for Max's death, which was officially ruled an accident. Dina also hired 2 independent experts to review Max's death, and widely publicized those reports. (Please refer to this thread: Max's Death - Dina's Independent Experts Summary Reports - Websleuths Crime Sleuthing Community )
Jonah Shacknai has not made any comments publicly about Max's death since his joint statement with Dina July 2011, expressing his sorrow at the untimely death of his son.
Why do you think Max Shacknai's parents, together, or separately, chose not to file a civil wrongful death lawsuit on his behalf, within the 2 year statute of limitations?
Last edited by OkieGranny; 02-23-2016 at 02:08 AM. Reason: broken link
09-09-2013, 10:16 AM #2
I understand why Jonah did not file a WDS. Whatever his reasons, finding the truth about what happened to Maxie has never been Jonah's mission, imo. Jonah's only mission is to keep quiet.
I do not understand why Dina did not file a WDS. Dina came to the public on the one year anniversary of Maxie's death via a large press conference to promote Maxie's House and also announce she would be making a request to reopen Maxie's investigation. Dina's media tour lasted an entire year. She even addressed the Coronado City Council after being denied by CPD. Dina gave several heart breaking interviews. She stated she would not give up. I believed her when she said she would not give up. Dina went on the Dr. Phil show and Dr. Drew. She produced two articles in the Phoenix Magazine. I believed in her quest for answers, as I never supported the theory presented on 9/2/2011. I am completely lost as for why she did not file a WDS. It appears she may also have been able to sue the involved LE agencies for evidence she was not provided. It leaves me wondering what she was truly seeking to accomplish. Why give up now? Was Dina really looking for answers or was she merely creating a smokescreen? Dina is the founder of Maxie's House. Dina's actions or lack of actions does not fit the mission of her foundation. It is disheartening to think it may have all been a smokescreen.
09-09-2013, 10:20 AM #3
My PURELY SPECULATIVE thoughts on why Max’s parents didn’t file a civil wrongful death lawsuit within the 2 year statute of limitations.
Jonah and Dina filing together:
1. There isn’t anything they agree on about the cause of Max’s death, so they were unwilling to work together bring any lawsuits together on Max’s behalf?
Jonah filing separately:
1. He believes his son’s death was correctly classified as an accident?
2. There is no one for him to pursue for damages? He is the homeowner, and there is no evidence of any wrong doing on the part of any “deep pocket” companies, such as the scooter manufacturer?
Dina filing separately:
1. She did not think she could prevail in a civil suit against Jonah for homeowner negligence?
2. She has a legal agreement from her divorce settlement not to sue Jonah, or she would lose settlement money from him? And she needs/ wants that money?
3. No attorneys were willing to take the case?
4. Attorneys were willing to take the case, but not on contingency, and Dina was unwilling to pay for attorney fees to sue the Zahau estate?
5. The Zahau family doesn’t have enough money to make it worth her efforts?
6. There is no genuine evidence beyond her own speculation that Max was injured in anything other than a very tragic accident?
7. Perhaps she bought Max the scooter for his birthday, and feels terribly guilty about the scooter playing a part in Max’s fall in the stairwell?
8. She knows Max’s death was an accident, but had an ulterior psychological motive in spending an entire year publicly accusing Rebecca and her minor sister?
9. She forgot there was a 2 year statute of limitations, and time got away from her?
10. She doesn’t want to sue anyone, because it would be financially and emotionally exhausting, with no clear benefit to her, or Max’s memory? Suing for Max’s autopsy pictures was too emotionally exhausting, and she didn’t want to sue anyone ever again?
11. She feels strongly she would lose, and she hates to lose?
12. She has changed her mind, and now believes Max’s death was just a horribly tragic accident, with no one to blame?
13. She is deeply embarrassed at her own public behavior, and the public accusations she has made over the past year, and wants to fade away from any further media attention?
14. She plans to file different kinds of lawsuits other than wrongful death?
15. She potentially has a child order of protection against her (restraining order) regarding the minor sister of Rebecca, and it wouldn’t look good to the court and a jury for her to sue the Zahau family? It would look vindictive?
Last edited by K_Z; 09-09-2013 at 10:22 AM. Reason: typo
09-09-2013, 11:37 AM #4
I'm not Dina or Jonah but I'm going to state the obvious. Of course, it's all my educated opinion.
1) Dina did her dog and pony show accusing Rebecca and her young teen sister XZ of "assaulting and causing the homicide of Max" in the media circuit and even hired two experts to supposedly prove that foregone, biased conclusion. However, it was all a SHOW and SCARE TACTIC to divert attention from her own guilt in Rebecca's murder and to draw attention away from Rebecca's case while at the same time using Rebecca and XZ as scapegoats for Max's accident and intimidating the Zahaus. She wanted to humiliate and bully the lower socioeconomic Zahau family into shutting up about Rebecca's murder and to intimidate them from filing a WDS. These are huge self-serving reasons why I believe she didn't file a WDS against the Zahaus.
On another note to address KZ's post, I don't believe the reason that Dina didn't file suit against Zahaus is that she thought it was financially not worthwhile because look at the way she's behaved and made irrational, false charges against Rebecca and XZ the past two plus years. Dina would do anything to damage the Zahaus, and spending a few more bucks for Dina in a WDS against the Zahaus would have been worth it to her except for the fact that she knows if she does, her own evil actions during the time of Rebecca's murder, as well as the full medical reports of Max would come out and she'd clearly be seen as a liar and be implicated in Rebecca's murder and be charged with murder.
2) Why Dina didn't file a WDS against Jonah is also patently obvious. He and she in their divorce decree likely had a stipulation that precludes either from litigating against one another, and if Dina sues Jonah, she'd lose all the financial hand-outs from that divorce decree.
3) Why Jonah didn't file WDS against the Zahaus is because he *knows* Max's death was an accident and trusts the authorities' ruling that it was an accident. Whether he and his teen kids were involved and/or witnessed Max's accident, IDK, but IMO I doubt it. Still seems absurd to me that he would have been focused on presumably protecting his older kids when his youngest -- a 6-y.o. son -- suffered a critical accident. I don't believe ANY parent would do that, unless they have a history of psychiatric problems, and to date, I haven't read any medical reports about Jonah having any such mental conditions. I'm not saying such reports don't exist, but I'm not aware of any and until I see proof that he suffers a mental condition, I will give him the benefit of the doubt.
09-09-2013, 11:52 AM #5Registered User
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Maybe Dina also has always known that an expert working on a reconstruction of Max's accident would most likely come up with a more plausible scenario than contradicts anything but an accident. I think in court, Dr. Bove would not really prove to be the best witness for her and it would be obvious his work was way too constrained to use in a court room. Dr. Melinek, unfortunate for her, was already torn to shreds on TV, but her report is so unprofessional (along with the misleading Summary) that I don't think all this would fare well for Dina.
Let me add... I believe if she had gone to court a lot of what she has claimed in interviews (particularly about Rebecca's character) would be scrutinized as well and seen for what it is. Some of this, in fact, could possibly help others in filing a counter suit.
09-09-2013, 07:20 PM #6
I have to agree with what others are saying here. I think that DS did not file suit (even though she stated that she wanted to see XZ deposed) because she knows what would come out (and would show the truth to all her claims). Poor little MS' hospital records are probably just the start of it. If DS had any real proof of what she claims happened to MS, she would have thrown it all out there as she did with the awful photos and her terrible accusations about a murdered woman and her minor sister. I don't think for a second that she didn't know about the statue of limitations or that she hasn't had legal advice throughout this. We know for a fact her divorce attorney, who is a highly respected and sought after attorney was on the board of her charity, MAXIES HOUSE, or at least she was at one point. I hold to no illusions that DS was unaware of the time slipping away.
As for JS, well I'm pretty sure all he's ever wanted since he lost MS and RZ was for all this to go away. Whatever his reasons for that may be. I don't know what role he plays in this mess. I know that Rady had him on their cameras the night RZ was killed and that he is the force behind the PR company white wash. IMOO he, or someone working for him, hired PP.
I do believe, however, that he is not the force behind certain other people who promote false rumors and innuendo in regard to this case. Those people have said for themselves that they are not hired by a PR firm. Since this same group of people were cited as sources in Melnick's report, I think that whatever connection to DS they have would be brought to light in any suit. Which I'm sure would be uncomfortable, to say the least.
09-10-2013, 02:56 AM #7
But now she has been named in the Zahau WDS, so a lot of what she may have been trying to avoid will undoubtedly come out into sunlight, IMO.
Max's hospital records, IMO, will be subpoenaed during discovery, for 2 major reasons: to establish whether or not there is evidence there to place Dina at Max's bedside during the time in question, and to demonstrate when pertinent information about Max's prognosis was communicated to BOTH Jonah and Dina. That is huge, IMO, to the plaintiffs' goals of the civil suit.
I've said for a long time that if there was anything in Max's records that was favorable to Dina, she would have gleefully plastered it all over the internet. She had no reservations at all posting Max's very, very sad and poignant EMS report, detailing the exceptionally grave difficulties in Max's care faced by the EMS crew. In many ways, I think Max's EMS report is harder to read than his autopsy. But all Dina cared about was one sentence fragment she highlighted and honed in on-- she couldn't see the forest for the trees, IMO, and probably never asked a medical professional to interpret it for her.
IMO, she "thought" she knew what the EMS report demonstrated, and that sentence fragment fit into her vendetta against Rebecca, so she cherry picked it, and posted it as an unrestricted public view. But she missed the message of the whole picture of what was going on. I would be furious with her for doing that, if I were Jonah. I doubt she ever asked his permission before putting that up for all to see.
I also strongly agree with time's comments that Dr. Bove may not be the best expert witness for Dina, and Melinek has a number of issues unfavorable to Dina if she or her report is used by Dina's attorney/s in the process of her defense.
We'll see how it all proceeds.
09-10-2013, 10:45 AM #8Registered User
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09-10-2013, 12:00 PM #9
09-10-2013, 09:05 PM #10
I am so sorry! You did say the same thing. My bad. Please forgive my oversight!
Sending you a nice glass of e-wine to apologize! (Or white wine, if that's your preference....or some other beverage....)
09-10-2013, 09:16 PM #11
09-10-2013, 09:23 PM #12
09-11-2013, 09:33 AM #13
What if Dina is pursuing other avenues? Could she still be working on getting Maxie's case reopened? I don't think we know whether or not Dina took her case to the AG. At one time she mentioned pursing other options that did not include the AG. Maybe this is why she did not file a WDS? Do we really know what is happening in the background? I personally don't believe this is happening, but in my opinion I think it is something that should be considered.
09-11-2013, 12:43 PM #14
However, seeing as how Dina's acted the past few years and all the missteps she's made via inappropriate channels, I seriously doubt that is the case.
09-12-2013, 09:46 AM #15
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