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Jury Rejects Amputee’s Claim for Four Million Dollars

May 29, 2015

Lee Weatherly and Kristen Thompson defended an automobile driver who crashed into a motorcyclist. The crash lead to the amputation of plaintiff’s left leg and almost $750,000 in medical bills.

While preparing for trial, Lee discovered a video from the investigating officer’s dashboard camera that contained a witness’s statement supporting the Defendant’s claim that the Plaintiff suddenly made a U-turn in front of her. Although during discovery Plaintiff had admitted to drinking a single beer shortly before the accident, the defense team discovered that the Plaintiff had been drinking much more alcohol and had been seen coming out of a second previously undisclosed bar shortly before the accident.

The defense retained a pharmacologist and presented overwhelming evidence that the Plaintiff had consumed almost five times the amount of alcohol than was admitted in discovery and the plaintiff was likely impaired by alcohol at the time of the crash. The Plaintiff presented evidence by a prominent expert accident reconstructionist from Charleston and a well-known toxicologist to counter Lee’s defense.

Prior to Lee and Kristen’s involvement other insurance companies had paid the Plaintiff almost $200,000 based on the strength of Plaintiff’s case as originally presented. At trial, the Plaintiff asked the jury to return a verdict of four million dollars. The jury returned a unanimous verdict that the Defendant was not negligent in any way and awarded the plaintiff nothing.

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