A jury has awarded $75,000 to an Austintown woman who filed a malpractice lawsuit against a Valley doctor who was in the news six years ago for a deadly boating accident on Berlin Reservoir.

Akron attorney Courtney Sutton tells 21 News that the jury returned a unanimous verdict in the case against Dr. Joseph Yurich of Poland.

Sutton’s law firm represented a woman who sued Yurich in Mahoning County Common Pleas Court, alleging that she hemorrhaged during a gallbladder removal procedure, requiring two blood transfusions, leaving a permanent scar.

The woman’s attorney argued that during an operation in early 2018, Dr. Yurich used a surgical tool during the operation when he knew there was a safer alternative.

Damages in the jury’s award included $35,000 in non-economic damages, $35,000 in future damages, and $5,000 in economic damages.

21 News reached out to Yurich’s attorney for comment but has not received a response.

A visiting judge heard the malpractice case after Judge John Durkin recused himself because it was Durkin who presided over Yurich’s 2017 trial in which the doctor was convicted of vehicular homicide and leaving the scene of an accident.

Yurich's speedboat hit a fishing boat around midnight on May 9, 2015, on Berlin Lake. The man in the fishing boat, Neal Cuppett of Akron, died. Another man in Cuppett's boat was injured.

As part of the sentence, Yurich was also placed on house arrest for 90 days with electronic monitoring, given five years of probation, and was ordered to perform 200 hours of community service.

Yurich had his medical license suspended for one year. His license was returned to active status in February 2020.