Steve Watrel is a Shareholder of Coker Law, a civil trial litigation firm located in Jacksonville, Florida. Steve is an A.V. rated civil trial lawyer in Jacksonville, Florida. Steve is rated in The Best Lawyers in America in the area of Healthcare, Super Lawyers in the area of Plaintiff ‘s personal injury, and Florida Legal Elite in the area of civil trial.

Steve’s areas of expertise are nursing home and assisted living facility abuse and neglect cases. He is a long-time EAGLE member of the Florida Justice Association. He currently serves on the Florida Justice Association’s Board of Directors, Chair of the Florida Justice Association’s Nursing Home Task Force, and Co-Chair of the Continuing Legal Education Committee.

Steve attended college at Tulane University, A.B. Freeman School of Business, and graduated with a B.S.M. focusing in finance in 1989. At Tulane, Steve was a member of the Sigma Chi Fraternity. He attended law school at Syracuse University in Syracuse, New York and graduated with his law degree in 1992.

After graduating law school in 1992, Steve became a member of the Florida Bar and U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida. In 1993, after one year in practice with a large litigation firm, he founded his own law firm, Steve Watrel, P.A. where he practiced for 27 years until he merged with Coker Law in January of 2020.

In 2003, he applied and was selected to attend the Trial Lawyer’s College, a 3 ½ week intensive trial program held at Thunderhead Ranch in Dubois, Wyoming. The Trial Lawyer’s College was founded by famed trial lawyer, Gerry Spence, whose vision was to train lawyers for the people using cutting edge methods. Steve has been back to the Trial Lawyer’s College to attend numerous graduate courses.

In 2015, he attended the first Trojan Horse Method seminar, founded by two of his colleagues from Trial Lawyers College. Trojan Horse Method is an advanced trial skills program focused on the principle of emotional congruence. Steve has attended numerous THM seminars and has utilized the techniques both in depositions and trial.

Steve is committed to his community and donates a significant amount of time and money to various charitable organizations including Seniors on a Mission.

Diana Santa Maria attended the University of Miami where she received both her undergraduate and law degrees. During law school she represented the school in Mock Trial and Moot Court Competitions on the state –wide level winning the Best Brief Award on behalf of the University of Miami at the (1983) Robert Orseck Memorial (State) Moot Court Competition. Upon graduation she was awarded and inducted into the Order of Barristers awarded to the top ten graduating law students based on leadership in trial and appellate advocacy.

Since being admitted to The Florida Bar in 1985, she has devoted her practice to the representation of persons injured as a result of the negligence of others. From 1985 until 1991 she practiced with one of the country’s top personal injury law firms in the areas of Plaintiff’s Personal Injury, Medical Malpractice and Wrongful Death, both on the trial and appellate levels. In 1991 Diana formed her own practice specializing in Plaintiff’s Personal Injury and Wrongful Death. She is a member of the American Board of Trial Advocates as well as a past President of its Fort Lauderdale Chapter (www.abotafll.org); she is a Sustaining Member of the American Justice Association, a member of the National Trial Lawyers Association and is AV rated by the Martindale-Hubbell Law Directory.

Throughout her law career and in addition to her practice, Diana has served the legal profession with distinction. She served a 4 year term as Commissioner on the State of Florida Supreme Court Judicial Nominating Commission and she served as adjunct Professor of Law at Nova Southeastern University Law Center. She is an active member of The Florida Bar and its Trial Bar, having lectured and written on numerous legal topics within her field, to include Seven Steps to Effective Mediation published in the June, 1997 TRIAL magazine as well as Guideline for Handling Sexual Abuse of a Minor by a Public School Teacher, published as part of a National Conference by the National Crime Victim Bar Association in Washington, D.C.

From 1996 – 2006 she served on the Board of Directors for the Academy of Florida Trial Lawyers ( n/k/a the Florida Justice Association) as well as on the Board of Directors for the Broward County Bar & Broward County Trial Lawyers Assn. ( n/k/a Broward Justice Assn.) . She was appointed by the Florida Bar in 2004 to the Florida Supreme Court’s Commission on Professionalism and since 2013 has served on the Florida Bar Board of Governors for the 17th Judicial Circuit. Diana has been listed in Who’s Who in American Law, The International Who’s Who of Professionals and Outstanding Young Women of America. She has also been named to Florida’s Super Lawyers and is listed among the Best Lawyers in America. Aside from being a lawyer, Diana is a parent and has a particular interest in and sensitivity to protecting and preserving the rights of children and enhancing all aspects of public safety.

Seth Stoughton is an Associate Professor at the University of South Carolina School of Law, where he is affiliated with the Rule of Law Collaborative. He studies policing, including officer training, agency culture, and the use of force, and his scholarship has appeared in the Minnesota Law Review, the North Carolina Law Review, the Virginia Law Review, and other leading journals. He has written multiple book chapters and is the principal co-author of Evaluating Police Uses of Force (NYU Press, 2020). He is a frequent lecturer on policing issues, regularly appears on national and international media, and has written for The New York Times, The Atlantic, TIME, and other news publications. He teaches Police Law & Policy, Criminal Procedure, Criminal Law, and the Regulation of Vice.

Seth served as an officer with the Tallahassee Police Department for five years. In that time, he trained other officers, helped write policies to govern the use of new technologies, earned multiple instructor and operator certifications, and taught personal safety and self-defense courses in the community. In 2004, he received a Formal Achievement Award for his role as a founding member of the Special Response Team. After leaving the police department, Seth spent three years as an Investigator in the Florida Department of Education’s Office of Inspector General, where he handled a variety of criminal and administrative investigations. In 2008, he received a statewide award for his work investigating private school tuition voucher fraud.

Seth earned his B.A. in English from Florida State University. He attended the University of Virginia School of Law, where he was an Articles Editor on the Virginia Law Review, an Elsie Hughes Cabell Scholar, and the recipient of the Thomas Marshall Miller Prize. After law school, he clerked for the Honorable Kenneth F. Ripple of the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit. Prior to joining the faculty at South Carolina, Seth was a Climenko Fellow and Lecturer on Law at Harvard Law School.

Jeremy Tor represents ordinary individuals severely injured or killed by the wrongful conduct of others. When someone in our community acts irresponsibly and causes serious harm, they must make it right. Jeremy believes the civil justice is among the best ways to help right a wrong.

Jeremy handles a variety of cases, including: civil rights, wrongful death, professional malpractice (including medical malpractice), motor vehicle crashes, and premises liability. He has significant litigation experience, from discovery to trial to the court of appeals. Jeremy has argued cases in state and federal appellate courts, including the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals.

sample of Jeremy’s cases include:

• $28 million wrongful death jury verdict in Cincinnati, the highest wrongful death verdict in Ohio history.
• $400,000 jury verdict on behalf of a temp worker whose thumb was amputated while working on an unguarded machine at a plastics manufacturer. The case settled before starting the punitive damages phase of trial.
• Six-figure settlements on behalf of:
• A bicyclist who broke her leg after being struck by a car whose driver fled the scene.
• A wife and husband who were rear-ended at a violent rate of speed by a careless driver.
• A bicyclist who struck a practically invisible wire that a construction company had strung across a road. After striking the wire, he flew over the handle-bars and landed headfirst, fracturing multiple vertebrae.
• A mall patron who slipped and fell on ice on the sidewalk outside a large mall, breaking her kneecap. Thirty minutes prior, another patron slipped and fell on the same patch of ice, yet the mall cops did nothing to fix, or even warn patrons about the hidden danger. The lawsuit included a claim for punitive damages.
• A worker who suffered debilitating lead poisoning after months of removing layers of paint because the general contractor violated multiple OSHA regulations, including the requirement to supply lead-safety protective gear.
• $300,000 settlement in a civil right case involving three individuals who were wrongfully arrested for obstruction of justice.
• Race discrimination case on behalf of a large, extended African-American family that was evicted from a hotel in Florida the first morning of their weeklong trip, which was their annual family reunion.
• Podiatric malpractice case on behalf of a patient who underwent unnecessary and excessive surgery, resulting in a permanent, disabling injury. The case settled on the fifth day of trial, right before the defendant-podiatrist was about to testify.
• Medical malpractice case on behalf of surrogate mother whose out-of-state doctor failed to diagnose an ectopic pregnancy, resulting in life-threatening hemorrhaging.
• Medical malpractice case on behalf of a woman who was wrongly diagnosed with terminal, metastatic cancer because the radiologist mixed up her records with another patient’s.
His excessive force cases include:
• Fatal police shooting. A man was shot twice by a police officer in the back while running away and pulling up his pants, which were below his bare buttocks. The man died at the scene.
• In-custody death. A jail inmate experiencing a medical episode was handcuffed in a prone (face down) position while 8 corrections officers surrounded him and several applied pressure to his legs, back, shoulders, and neck until he suffocated to death.
• Fatal police shooting. A young man called 911 because his apartment was being burglarized but was shot dead by the very police he had called for help.

Jeremy is privileged to represent U.S. soldiers and Gold Star families in a lawsuit against some of the world’s most powerful banks. The lawsuit, brought by a team of top-flight trial lawyers and firms, seeks to hold the banks accountable under the Anti-Terrorism Act and the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act for providing material support (to the tune of hundreds of billions of dollars) to Iran and its de facto terrorism arm, Hezbollah, who collectively waged a campaign of terrorism in Iraq against Coalition forces beginning in 2003.

Jeremy is part of the team litigating claims against the companies who manufacture and distribute opiates-and who helped spawn the opioid epidemic-in the nationwide opiate Multidistrict Litigation (MDL), which is pending in federal court in the Northern District of Ohio.

Before joining the Spangenberg firm, Jeremy served as a federal law clerk. He received his law degree in 2011 from the University of Virginia. Upon graduation, he was awarded the Eppa Hunton IV Memorial Book Award, which is given by the faculty to one graduating student “who has demonstrated unusual aptitude in litigation courses and shown a keen awareness and understanding of the lawyer’s ethical and professional responsibility.”

Before law school, Jeremy was a Teach For America corps member in Baltimore, where he taught Spanish to high school students at a public school in west Baltimore and earned a Master’s in teaching from Johns Hopkins University.
Jeremy went to college on a full-ride at the University of Arizona, obtaining a dual Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and Spanish, graduating with Honors, summa cum laude, and receiving the Outstanding Senior Award as the top Political Science graduate. Jeremy was President and Captain of his college mock trial team, participating in numerous tournaments across the country and earning nearly a dozen Outstanding Attorney awards.

Nick DiCello is a partner at Spangenberg, Shibley & Liber, LLP in Cleveland, Ohio, where he has practiced since completing a federal clerkship in 2004. As a trial lawyer, Nick handles and tries many different kinds of cases. For the last 10 years he has headed up Spangenberg’s civil rights practice and has received Best Lawyers’® Lawyer of the Year award in the area of Civil Rights twice over the past 3 years.

Nick litigates, argues and tries civil rights cases, primarily in federal court, in Ohio and around the country. Nick’s cases and the stories of some of his clients have been featured on the Today Show and on the cover of the Huffington Post. He has argued extensively in the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals in civil rights cases, primarily arguing against the application of qualified immunity. Representative cases include a $4 million settlement for the family of a mentally ill man who was pepper sprayed and strapped into a restraint chair in a Florida jail, resulting in his death, a $4 million settlement for the family of a 28 year-old man who died after he was held down prone for more than 20 minutes while in the midst of a medical episode in a county Jail in southern Ohio, a $2.6 million settlement on behalf of the family of a schizophrenic 32 year-old man who was beaten and restrained in a restraint chair in a county jail and died, and a $1.65 million settlement for a man who was shot in the back while trying to flee a drug bust in West Virginia.

Nick has argued numerous cases at the Sixth Circuit and defended against a petition to the USSC. Several of Nick’s cases have furthered the protections afforded citizens during encounters with police and have limited the use of tasers, deadly force, and prone restraint by officers under certain circumstances.

Chas Short defends clients accused of white collar crime in Federal and Florida state proceedings. His defense of white collar prosecutions and investigations include those involving Foreign Corrupt Practices Act issues, alleged health care fraud, tax allegations, and other accusations of business crimes.

In addition to Mr. Short’s representation of clients in connection with white collar investigations and prosecutions, he also conducts corporate internal investigations and assists businesses in developing compliance programs.
Chas Short is a partner at the white collar criminal defense firm Calli Law, located in Miami.

Cashton L. Sessler is a respected Seattle attorney who is dedicated to representing his clients.

Cash began his career in a small personal-injury firm in 1986. He later left private practice to gain trial experience as a Whatcom County Deputy Prosecutor. After a brief tenure at an insurance-defense firm, Cash opened Cashton L. Sessler, P.S. in 1991. For the past 20 plus years he has been dedicated to representing individuals in criminal-defense and personal-injury cases.

One of Cash’s defining advantages is that he has worked as a prosecutor and a criminal-defense attorney, an insurance-defense lawyer and a personal-injury attorney. His experience working both sides of the issues helps him better understand the strengths and weaknesses of each client’s case.

As a criminal-defense attorney Cash knows from experience that prosecutors respect attorneys who prepare each case as if it is going to trial, so that is how he approaches each case. Cash has personally and successfully represented hundreds of individuals charged with a variety of crimes across Washington over the last two plus decades.

As a personal-injury attorney Cash knows that attention to detail often means the difference between a fair settlement and an unjust one. He thoroughly investigates each case and he takes time to prepare each client for every step of the process.

Education
Washington University, J.D. (1985)
Grinnell College, B.A (1981)

Admitted
Washington State Bar
United States District Court, Western Washington
United States Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit

Membership
2014 to the present Top 100 Trial Lawyers, The National Trial Lawyers

Joshua J. Hertz received a B.A. from the University of South Carolina in 1997 with a double major in Accountant and Management. Received his J.D. from St. Thomas Law School in 2001. Started his law firm directly out of law school concentrating in the field of personal injury.

He is the Past President of the Young Lawyers Division of the Dade County Bar Association 2009-2010. The founder and Chair of the Solo and small firm for Dade County Bar Association 2012-2020. Lectures on how to start your own firm for the local South Florida Law Schools. A member of the Florida Bar Executive committee for Solo and Small firm 2015-2020. President-Elect for the Miami Lakes Bar Association 2020 and past Treasurer and Board Member. Co-founder and past President of the Dominican American Bar Association 2016-2020. Graduate of the Florida Bar Leadership Academy, Class I 2013-2014. On the Board of Advisor for St. Thomas Law School – 2002-2020.

Kyle Kinberger is the National Sales Manager for HMR.

Kyle has helped hundreds of attorneys get the funding needed for their clients’ medical care. Currently he oversees the daily operation of business done in the 39 states where they currently operate. Kyle has been with HMR since 2012 and has been in the medical funding space for over 10 years.

HMR has been an industry leader in medical funding for the last 8 years and continues to expand the thousands of medical providers and attorneys they work with nationwide. HMR has funded thousands of plaintiffs’ medical care across the personal injury spectrum, with a primary concentration on funding catastrophic injury cases for plaintiffs who are uninsured.

HMR works with many different specialty providers that include Orthopedic and Neuro Surgeons, Interventional Pain Management Specialists, and Inpatient and Outpatient Traumatic Brain Injury Centers. HMR is one of the only companies in the country willing to fund large brain injury cases for plaintiffs involved in litigation.