Violent attacker who beat Kamloops teen with baseball bat should pay $6M, judge told

$6M for Jessie Simpson?

A young Kamloops man who will be severely disabled for the rest of his life following a gruesome 2016 beating at the hands of a vigilante armed with a baseball bat should be awarded nearly $6 million, a B.C. Supreme Court judge has been told.

Jessie Simpson was in a coma for months following a June 19, 2016, beating at the hands of Kristopher Teichrieb.

Then 18, Simpson had been out celebrating high-school graduation in the hours leading up to the attack. He became separated from a group of friends and wandered onto Teichrieb’s Clifford Avenue property.

Court has heard Teichrieb chased Simpson 90 metres down the street and beat him with a metal baseball bat, as well as with his hands and fists.

Simpson’s injuries were catastrophic, court has heard. He will require 24-hour care for the rest of his life and will never work.

Teichrieb pleaded guilty in 2018 to one count of aggravated assault and is currently serving a seven-year sentence at a federal penitentiary in the Fraser Valley.

Teichrieb told police in the weeks leading up to the attack that he might take vigilante action to deal with surging property crime in his neighbourhood. Mounties warned him to avoid any such confrontation.

Simpson’s mother sued Teichrieb on her son’s behalf, seeking damages and lost wages as well as past and future healthcare costs.

Teichrieb’s two-day civil trial wrapped up in B.C. Supreme Court in Kamloops on Wednesday. In her closing submissions, Simpson’s lawyer said her client should be found to be near the extreme end when it comes to non-pecuniary damages — money awarded to a plaintiff to make life more bearable.

“He was transformed from a vibrant, happy teenager to a comatose being hovering near death,” Kelsey O’Bray-Lazar told court, becoming emotional while summarizing the impact of Simpson’s injuries.

The award sought by O’Bray-Lazar includes more than $3 million to pay for future care and upwards of $1.5 million for lost future earnings, as well as nearly $400,000 in non-pecuniary damages.

B.C. Supreme Court Justice Dev Dley said he expects to deliver a judgement within 30 days, but no date has been set.

A separate legal proceeding is underway dealing with allegations Teichrieb hid assets following the attack to avoid having to pay a civil judgement. Simpson’s lawyers have alleged he sold his $587,000 Clifford Avenue home to his parents for $1.

Teichrieb was not present at this week’s trial and no one appeared on his behalf. Court heard he had been served, and comments in his parole documents from October make it clear he was aware of the proceeding.

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