Judge turns down request by sisters of Ed Buck victim 

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Wave Wire Services

SANTA MONICA — A judge denied a request June 27 by three sisters whose brother died in the West Hollywood apartment of Ed Buck in 2019 to enter judgment before trial on three of their eight civil suit claims in their favor and against the former Democratic donor, including wrongful death.

Santa Monica Superior Court Judge H. Jay Ford III issued a final ruling rejecting arguments by attorneys for plaintiffs Joyce Jackson, Joann Campbell and Retha Singleton. The sisters’ lawyers maintained that the wrongful death, drug dealer liability and premises civil liability causes of action were all proven by virtue of Buck’s 2021 federal court conviction in the death of their late brother, Timothy Dean.

“Plaintiffs fail to present any evidence regarding the amount of damages they are seeking, nor do plaintiffs claim that the issue of their damages were fully and finally adjudicated in the federal criminal action,” the judge wrote.

In a minute order prepared by the judge’s clerk after the hearing, Ford said he is “inclined to proceed with an uncontested trial should [Buck] fail to appear for trial,” which is currently set for Aug. 7.

Jackson and Campbell submitted sworn declarations in support of their motion.

“I would never have expected to have to bury my baby brother,” Jackson said. “I had to go into my 401k for his burial, being from Florida [and] commuting to California has cost me time and energy and money that I will never be able to recoup unless I’m reimbursed by [Buck].”

In her statement, Campbell said her brother was taken from her “in the cruelest fashion imaginable” and that words cannot express her loss.

“Tim was the apple of our family,” Campbell said. “Tim and I share the same birthday month, March 25 and 26. We are one day and one year apart. We always celebrated together and Ed Buck has stolen that from us.”

Campbell said she still has her brother’s phone number in her cell phone and “I refuse to delete it.”

After a nine-day trial in July 2021, a federal jury found Buck guilty of two counts of distribution of methamphetamine resulting in death, four counts of distribution of methamphetamine, one count of maintaining a drug-involved premises, and two counts of enticement to travel in interstate commerce for prostitution stemming from the deaths of Dean and another man, Gemmel Moore, who was found dead in Buck’s apartment in July 2017.

The 68-year-old Buck was sentenced in April 2022 to 30 years in prison. A month later, Ford lifted a temporary stay on the civil case. The plaintiffs’ other causes of action against Buck are for sexual battery, assault, battery, hate violence and intentional infliction of emotional distress.

Several vials, syringes and containers of narcotics were recovered from throughout Buck’s residence, according to the lawsuit filed in January 2020, which cites autopsy report findings.

The Los Angeles County coroner’s office concluded that Dean’s death was caused by an accidental methamphetamine overdose, according to the plaintiffs’ court papers, which state that Buck has contributed more than $500,000 to the election campaigns and legal defense funds of numerous Los Angeles County and city government officials and candidates since 2008.

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