Morrison Mahoney Partner Ralph Sullivan recently prevailed in a four day jury trial at the Norfolk Superior Court before Judge Miller.
The 45 year old plaintiff/pedestrian was struck at night by a car while she was in a crosswalk near Legacy Place in Dedham. Plaintiff sustained serious left leg fractures, as well as orbital fractures and facial disfigurement, as a result of her head striking the windshield. She was then tossed to the edge of the road by the impact of the vehicle which struck her. Our client was travelling directly behind the vehicle which struck the plaintiff/pedestrian. Neither driver saw the plaintiff prior to impact, as she was wearing dark clothing. The plaintiff alleged that our client/driver was tailgating, which distracted the operator of the vehicle which struck her. The plaintiff settled prior to trial with the driver who struck her for his policy limit of $100,000. The case went to trial only against our client.
Prior to trial, Judge William Sullivan precluded the plaintiff's accident reconstruction expert because the disclosure was made too late, and did not make a proper reference to causation. The plaintiff incurred $350,000 of medical bills. However, her attorneys failed to certify them prior to trial. Accordingly, plaintiff's counsel was forced to accept a stipulation that the plaintiff's medical bills totaled $68,000, the amount which was actually paid by the plaintiff's health insurer.
The jury deliberated for about an hour and determined that our driver was negligent, but that his negligence was not a substantial factor in causing the plaintiff's injuries.