Can you find the lawsuit in this obituary?

The New York Times obits are good reads — dense biographical essays about interesting people’s lives, really, more than death notices.

Yesterday’s obit by Bruce Weber for jazz pianist Hal Schaefer contains a lot of very famous names, a great picture of Marilyn Monroe and a nugget about a lawsuit that arose from a bunch of guys breaking into the wrong apartment. Take a look. You’ll be startled when you read who that bunch of guys were.

That lawsuit echoes one I worked on years ago, when our client’s front door in a good neighborhood was broken down by police who had confidential information that she was running guns. She wasn’t; she ran a college office and was a playwright. On her behalf we filed a Notice of Claim against the City of New York. The City settled, fast, for — coincidentally — the same amount noted in the Hal Schaefer obit.


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