Longform

Crash Landing

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In his response, O'Hara claims Hager simply failed to try the case properly and is now mounting a "smoke-and-mirrors campaign" to keep it alive. "The allegations in that motion are not true," he says. "And those same arguments were universally rejected by the court. The plaintiff was given all of that information a year, two years, before this case was tried. The information they claim they were not given, they were given. They got the FBI information themselves; they got it before we did."

Williams, however, has yet to rule on the motion and could still levy as-yet-unspecified sanctions against Delta, including fines. The judge has also yet to rule on Hager's request for a new trial, which she filed November 19. In it, the lawyer argues that much of the testimony was prejudicial to her client and that Barker should have been allowed to testify at greater length.

Though the odds against Axelrad may be growing longer, she's confident she will get another day in court. "Why couldn't they have helped me in the first place?" Axelrad asks of Delta. "Why? I didn't do anything to them. I was just their passenger. The whole system was messed up from the very beginning to the very end. We are going to get a retrial. We have to."

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