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A Los Angeles County jury awarded one woman $4 million on Monday after stray electricity from a next-door substation repeatedly shocked her in the shower.
Simona Wilson, of Redondo Beach, Calif., experienced low-voltage electrocution each time she adjusted the new, metal shower head installed in her home in March 2011, according to Redondo Beach Patch. She said the jolts left her with nerve damage.
Symptoms that began as nausea and headaches turned into numb arms, legs, and feet by that April, Easy Reader reported. Her condition forced her to make several trips to the emergency room. According to the Los Angeles Times, the nerve damage eventually developed into a condition called erythromelalgia.
Wilson, a mother of three, suspected the shower head was to blame when her boyfriend, Jason Stelle, also experienced a tingling feeling as he touched it.
Her attorney said that doctors were unable to link nerve damage to the stray electricity, NBC Los Angeles reported, but a home inspector told her to "get out" immediately. She moved out in September 2011 and filed a lawsuit against utility company Southern California Edison that October.
The home was originally built by Edison in 1960 to house workers from the nearby Topaz power substation, according to the New York Daily News.
Wilson's attorneys, Lars C. Johnson and Brian Hong, said that the company did not disclose this history when they sold the home.
On Monday, the court decided that Edison had acted in "reckless disregard" and was "negligent," according to the Beach Reporter.
Wilson was awarded $1 million in compensatory damages and $3 million in punitive damages.
"We are thrilled," Johnson told the Beach Reporter. "Simona has been in a long fight, and Edison put her through a lot. "
On Tuesday, the company released a statement saying it had acted responsibly and "cooperated fully with the investigation," NBC Los Angeles reported. Edison is still deciding whether to appeal.