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Recent Cases
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2016

Traffic Light Dispute/Lumbar and Foot Fractures
Style of Case: Abbey Rodgers v. Kendra Holdener
Client:    Kendra Holdener
Trial End Date:   6/20/2016
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit, Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Traffic Light Dispute/Lumbar & Foot Fractures
Judge:    The Honorable Judge Andy Matoesian
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Tori L. Walls
Jury Verdict
The accident occurred at the intersection of Troy Road and Governor's Parkway in Edwardsville on June 18, 2014. The plaintiff was travelling southbound on Troy Road and the defendant was travelling northbound on Troy Road intending to make a left turn onto Governor's Parkway. The collision occurred in the intersection as the defendant was making a left turn onto Governor's Parkway. The plaintiff claimed she entered the intersection on a solid green light that turned yellow as her tires crossed the stop line. The defendant claimed she came to a stop behind another vehicle in the left hand turn lane on a red light. The defendant claimed her light then changed to a green left turn arrow, the car in front of her entered the intersection turning left and she followed behind and started her left turn. As the defendant entered the intersection, the plaintiff also entered the intersection and the collision occurred.
The jury heard testimony from the plaintiff, her treating doctor, the responding Edwardsville Police Department officer and the defendant. The plaintiff was confronted with her cellular telephone records which indicated the plaintiff had incoming and outgoing phone calls shortly before the collision was reported to the police department via 911. Defendant's counsel argued the cell phone activity distracted plaintiff's attention from the roadway, even if momentarily, which caused her to enter the intersection against a red light. Defendant's counsel argued that it was plaintiff's negligence, not defendant's, which caused this collision. The plaintiff claimed she suffered fractures of the transverse process of her lumbar spine, a dislocated toe and fractures of her foot. She asked the jury to award her medical bills totaling $21,873.10, lost wages of $2,688, an amount of money for her loss of normal life and an amount of money for her past and future pain and suffering.
The jury returned a verdict in favor of the defendant and against the plaintiff, awarding the plaintiff no money.  
Last Demand:    None
Verdict:    None
Jury Rejects Fraud Claim Levelled Against Insurance Carrier
Style of Case: Ronnie Phillips v. State Farm Fire and Casualty Company
Client:    State Farm Fire and Casualty Company
Trial End Date:    3/11/2016
Court:    Twentieth Judicial Circuit, St. Clair County, Illinois
Type of Case:    First Party Common Law Fraud Claim
Judge:    The Honorable Christopher Kolker
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Martin K. Morrissey and Michael J. Bedesky
Jury Verdict
In February 2010 plaintiff had purchased insurance for a building located in Belleville, Illinois; coverage was set at 80% of actual cash value. In May 2010 a fire occurred at the structure severely damaging part of the building. Defendant carrier adjusted the loss and paid the plaintiff the full policy limits of $436,800 within thirty days of the loss.
In July 2011 it was discovered that an underwriting error had occurred concerning the original measurements and thus proposed coverage figures for the structure. Defendant re-measured the property and proposed a policy reformation which, according to defendant, had been accepted by the plaintiff in November 2011 for the payment of a relatively small additional policy premium. Thereafter the loss was readjusted in relation to a further reformed policy limit, and those limits were ultimately paid.

Plaintiff argued that common law fraud occurred in relation to the mistaken square footage estimate before and after its discovery, and he also denied that a reformation of the policy had occurred. Plaintiff also argued that the actual cash value of the structure was higher than the amount eventually proposed for the policy reformation. Defendant countered that when the innocent mistake was discovered it was remedied through an appropriate reformation, and denied any fraud in relation to the transaction and the ultimate reformation. Defendant argued plaintiff knew and understood the terms of the reformation that occurred and further argued that the actual cash value figures determined for the structure were appropriately derived and calculated accurately.  
Last Demand:     Plaintiff asked the jury for approximately $300,000 in compensatory damages, and a further $2 million to $3 million in punitive damages.
Verdict:     Defense Verdict; the jury found in favor of defendant carrier and against plaintiff rejecting the common law fraud claims brought against the defendant.

Related Practice Areas

Lumbar Fusion, Rear-End Auto
Style of Case: Michael Thomason v. Robert Osterhout
Client:    Robert Osterhout
Trial End Date:    2/18/2016
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit, Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Lumbar Fusion, Rear-End Auto
Judge:    The Honorable Andy Matoesian
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Tori L. Walls
Jury Verdict
The accident occurred on Rt. 159 in Edwardsville at the Interstate 270 interchange on November 22, 2010. The defendant was travelling behind the plaintiff in the left hand turn lane when the defendant rear-ended the plaintiff at a low rate of speed. The defendant admitted he was negligent in causing the collision, but denied the plaintiff was injured to the extent he claimed. The jury heard testimony from the plaintiff, his treating primary care physician and his pain management doctor. The jury also heard testimony from the defendant’s medical expert. The testimony established that following the accident, the plaintiff was taken to the emergency room with generalized complaints of neck and back pain. The emergency room diagnosis was neck and low back strain/sprain. He then followed up with his primary care physician a week later with similar complaints and received the same diagnosis. He then had a short round of chiropractic care that lasted about 2 months. The evidence showed there was then a 14 month period of time when the plaintiff made no complaints about any neck or back pain to any doctor. The plaintiff’s primary care physician testified that she saw the plaintiff multiple times during that 14 month time frame and found his spine to be normal and pain free on examination. The plaintiff then returned to his primary care physician and complained of a sudden onset of low back pain and leg pain after having done some mopping. The plaintiff then proceeded to have multiple steroid injections in his low back and eventually underwent a lumbar fusion surgery. After the fusion surgery, he continued to complain of pain and ultimately had another surgery to install a spinal cord stimulator. The plaintiff testified that he continues to experience pain even now, 5 years later. The defendant’s position was that the minor rear end car accident, which caused very little damage to either vehicle, was not the proximate cause of the plaintiff’s injuries and was not the proximate cause of all the damages he claimed.The plaintiff sought to admit over $150,000 in medical bills into evidence and asked the jury to award him $300,000 for his medical bills, pain and suffering and loss of normal life. The jury returned a verdict in favor of the defendant and against the plaintiff, awarding the plaintiff no money.  
Last Demand:     $100,000
Verdict:     Defense

Related Practice Areas

2015

Rear-end Auto, Whiplash/Cervical Strain
Style of Case: Sickmier v. Bronsman
Client:    Aaron Bronsman
Trial End Date:    12/15/2015
Court:    Twentieth Judicial Circuit, St. Clair County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Rear-end Auto, Whiplash/Cervical Strain
Judge:    The Honorable Heinz Rudolf
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Joshua Severit
Jury Verdict
The defendant struck the rear of Plaintiff’s vehicle at a very low rate of speed at the intersection of Green Mount Commons and Carlyle Avenue in St. Clair County, Illinois. No injuries were reported at the scene. Plaintiff later claimed a cervical strain injury as a result of whiplash. His medical bills totaled $9,382.34.The defendant denied he proximately caused Plaintiff’s alleged damages to the extent claimed. Plaintiff waited almost four months before seeking any medical treatment related to the accident. Expert testimony established a cervical strain injury would have resolved within six weeks following the accident. Therefore, the defense established all of the treatment beginning four months later was not related to the accident.  
Last Demand:     Mandatory arbitration award: $16,000.00 rejected.
Verdict:     Defense Verdict

Related Practice Areas


Automobile Injury, Improper Trailer Loading
Style of Case: Deborah Kohler v. Sonnenberg Paving and Landscaping Materials Company and Kenneth Kohler
Client:    Sonnenberg Paving and Landscaping Materials Company
Trial End Date:    8/26/2015
Court:    20th Judicial Circuit Court, St. Clair County, IL
Type of Case:    Automobile Injury, Improper Trailer Loading
Judge:    The Honorable Heinz Rudolf
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Michael Hobin
Jury Verdict
The Kohlers purchased landscaping bricks and blocks from Sonnenberg Paving and Landscaping Materials Company. Personnel of Sonnenberg loaded bricks and blocks on the Kohler’s trailer, and Mr. Kohler assisted. Ms. Kohler was a front seat passenger in the truck Mr. Kohler was operating while hauling the load behind it when a single vehicle collision occurred less than two miles from Sonnenberg. The Kohlers alleged the uneven load caused their trailer to fishtail which then caused Mr. Kohler to lose control of the truck. Sonnenberg argued plaintiff did not present sufficient evidence of an uneven load. Both plaintiff and Sonnenberg alleged Mr. Kohler was driving too fast under the circumstances causing the collision to occur. Plaintiff fractured her left arm and damage to her left median and radial nerves. The fracture was operated and Dr. William Ricci testified the metal plates and screws he inserted could still be causing her occasional discomfort today. Plaintiff testified her nerve injury remains disabling to date. She testified that she still has difficulty with many activities of daily living and Mr. Kohler confirmed her testimony. Plaintiff testified her nerve injury has left her permanently and totally disabled from any gainful employment as well. She has not worked since the single vehicle collision. The jury returned a defense verdict for Sonnenberg and verdict of $100,000 against co-defendant Mr. Kohler.  
Last Demand:     None
Verdict:     Defense

Related Practice Areas


T-Bone Collision, Tailbone Angulation
Style of Case: Sin v. Drake
Client:    Constance Drake
Trial End Date:    7/13/2015
Court:    3rd Judicial Circuit Court, Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    T-Bone Collision, Tailbone Angulation
Judge:    Honorable Dennis Ruth
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  William B. Starnes II
Jury Verdict
This case settled after the first full day of trial which included plaintiff´s direct and cross examination. Before the first day of trial, evidence depositions were taken of plaintiff’s treating orthopedic surgeon, her physical therapist, her chiropractor and defendant’s retained orthopedic surgeon. Defendant admitted fault for running a red light and colliding into the vehicle in which plaintiff was a passenger resulting in a moderately severe impact, but denied plaintiff was injured to the extent claimed. Plaintiff was transported to the emergency room where she complained of pain to her neck and knees, x-rays of which were normal. She was diagnosed with knee abrasions and neck strain. She also claimed she strained her low back and injured or aggravated a prior injury to her tail bone but made no complaints of tailbone pain or low back pain the day of the accident or for several weeks thereafter. Plaintiff had low back pain and tailbone pain for several months before the accident, including 11 days before the accident, when she complained her tailbone pain was severe and disrupting her normal activities. Plaintiff had a 90 degree angulation of her tail bone, and it was disputed whether this was traumatic or congenital. Plaintiff’s claimed medical expenses were nearly $20,000. In the morning before the second day of trial began, the parties settled for defendant’s pre-suit offer of $20,000.  
Last Demand:     $75,000
Verdict:     Settled for pre-suit offer of $20,000

Related Practice Areas


2014

Traffic Light Dispute/Personal Injury
Style of Case: Sharon McMurray v. Deloris Fields
Client:    Deloris Fields
Trial End Date:    8/13/2014
Court:    3rd Judicial Circuit, Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Traffic Light Dispute/Personal Injury
Judge:    The Honorable Barbara Crowder
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Jennifer M. Wagner
Jury Verdict
Plaintiff was attempting a left turn from Route 3 onto Broadway in Venice, Illinois, when she was struck by the Defendant, who was proceeding straight on Route 3 in the opposite direction. Each party claimed that she had the green light. Plaintiff testified in her deposition that she looked to the overhead lights to make her turn, but testified at trial that she looked at the separate left turn signal, mounted on a pole, to make her turn. Photographs of the intersection revealed that the overhead lights controlled only the through lanes, not traffic in the left turn lane, which was controlled by a separate signal. Plaintiff’s deposition testimony was used for impeachment purposes at trial. Plaintiff also sought costs of future medical care, and brought her chiropractor to testify live. On the stand, the chiropractor admitted that his opinion as to Plaintiff’s need for future medical care was largely speculation.  
Last Demand:     $10,000
Verdict:     Defense Verdict

Related Practice Areas


Slip & Fall on Ice
Style of Case: Richee v. DeSherlia’s Landing Corporation
Client:    DeSherlia's Landing Corporation
Trial End Date:    5/28/2014
Court:    Seventh Judicial Circuit Court, Jersey County
Type of Case:    Slip & Fall on Ice
Judge:    The Honorable Eric Pistorious
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Joshua Severit
Jury Verdict
Plaintiff claimed she slipped and fell on a patch of ice while walking her dog at an apartment complex owned by the Defendant. She fell on a common walkway next to a gutter which emptied water from the roof of the building. She alleged the gutter created an unnatural accumulation of ice by allowing water to run across the common walkway. The defendant argued a downspout diverted water away from the walkway, the weather conditions were not cold enough to create an unnatural accumulation of ice, and she contributed to her own injuries given her familiarity with the area where she fell.As a result of the fall, Plaintiff claimed she fractured her coccyx and missed over one month of work as a school bus driver. She incurred $6,193 in medical bills and $1,800 in lost wages. Defendant’s medical expert testified the plaintiff did not fracture her coccyx. She had a normal variant of her terminal segment, which could appear fractured to the untrained eye on an x-ray film. Additionally, defendant’s expert would have sent Plaintiff back to work immediately.The jury found plaintiff’s contributory negligence was 50% the proximate cause of the accident and returned a net verdict for $3,596.92. The jury awarded $0.00 on Plaintiff’s lost wage claim.Plaintiff filed a post-trial motion for judgment notwithstanding the verdict. Plaintiff argued the verdict was inconsistent given the jury’s award of medical bills, pain and suffering, and no lost wages. The Court ruled in Plaintiff’s favor, awarding lost wages of $1,800.  
Last Demand:     $32,600.00
Verdict:     $3,596.92

Related Practice Areas


Construction Negligence
Style of Case: Christopher Durr vs. CSR Construction, Inc
Client:    CSR Construction, Inc
Trial End Date:    5/20/2014
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit, Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Construction Negligence
Judge:    The Honorable Associate Judge Donald Flack
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Michael Hobin
Jury Verdict
In January 2012 the City of Alton contracted with defendant CSR Construction, Inc. to do sidewalk repairs nearby the premises owned by the plaintiff Christopher Durr. Pursuant to the contract, CSR repaired the sidewalk across the street from the premises owned by plaintiff. Plaintiff claimed the work damaged his property causing plaintiff to pay a bricklayer $20,000 to repair his building. Defendant denied its work damaged plaintiff’s property. A structural engineer hired by the defendant testified CSR’s work did not cause the damages alleged. This case was first arbitrated on November 19, 2013 pursuant to the Illinois Supreme Court mandatory arbitration system. Plaintiff was awarded $5,500 by the arbitration panel of three local attorneys but filed a timely rejection of that award. At trial, plaintiff’s counsel suggested an award of $20,000 to the jury while defendant’s attorney insisted the only appropriate verdict was a “defense verdict.” After deliberating for approximately 5 minutes the jury returned a defense verdict ($0).  
Last Demand:     $20,000
Verdict:     Defense Verdict

Related Practice Areas


Personal Injury Auto; Admitted Negligence
Style of Case: Korey Duncan v. Dara Nolte
Client:    Dara Nolte
Trial End Date:    3/12/2014
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit, Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Personal Injury Auto; Admitted Negligence
Judge:    The Honorable Circuit Judge A.A. Matoesian
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Michael Hobin
Jury Verdict
On June 11, 2008, plaintiff and defendant were involved in a motor vehicle accident in Madison County, IL. Plaintiff claimed he was injured as a result of the rear end collision. Defendant admitted she caused the collision but denied that the plaintiff was injured to the extent claimed. Plaintiff testified during his case in chief concerning his claimed personal injuries and corresponding medical and chiropractic bills totaling approximately $28,000. Plaintiff also claimed he lost out on a baseball scholarship totaling over $11,000 and the chance to play baseball professionally. Plaintiff’s attorney called upon plaintiff’s surgeon and chiropractor as well. Defendant’s attorney hired a medical expert to physically examine the plaintiff, and his evidentiary testimony was read to the jury over the course of nearly two hours. Defense counsel also called upon plaintiff’s junior college baseball coach to testify at trial. Plaintiff’s counsel suggested an award of $65-$90,000 during his opening statement. Defendant’s attorney suggested an award of $9,000 was appropriate during his closing argument. After deliberating for less than 30 minutes the jury returned a verdict of $10,000.  
Last Demand:     $40,000
Verdict:     $10,000

Related Practice Areas


T-bone Auto Collision, Soft-tissue Injury
Style of Case: Latham v. Harman
Client:    Jacob Harman
Trial End Date:    2/11/2014
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit, Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    T-bone Auto Collision, Soft-tissue Injury
Judge:    The Honorable Andy Matoesian
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Joshua Severit
Jury Verdict
Plaintiff was traveling Southbound at highway speed on Troy O’Fallon Road when the defendant pulled out in front of his vehicle from Lebanon Road. Defendant admitted he was on the phone with his sister at the time of the accident. Plaintiff refused medical treatment at the scene but went to the emergency room the following day. Thereafter, he treated with his family physician and physical therapist for almost three months. Plaintiff claimed an injury to his neck and low back as a result of the collision. Plaintiff’s medical bills totaled $10,098. Although Defendant admitted he was negligent in causing the collision, Plaintiff alleged Defendant’s use of a cell phone at the time of the collision was willful and wanton conduct.  
Last Demand:     $62,230.00
Verdict:     $13,232.00

Related Practice Areas


2013

Traffic Light Dispute
Style of Case: Daren Gleason and Stephanie Wills vs. Rick Healey
Client:    Rick Healey
Trial End Date:    11/13/2013
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit, Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Personal Injury Auto Collision
Judge:    The Honorable Dennis Ruth
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Tori L. Walls
Jury Verdict
Defendant, Rick Healey, was travelling westbound on Landmarks Blvd. near the intersection of Ridge Street in Alton, Illinois on September 8, 2007. At that same time, Plaintiff, Daren Gleason, was travelling eastbound on Landmarks Blvd. at the intersection of Ridge Street with Plaintiff, Stephanie Wills, as a front seat passenger. At that time, Plaintiff Gleason made a left turn from Landmarks Blvd. towards Ridge Street and a collision occurred between Plaintiff’s vehicle and Defendant’s vehicle. The plaintiffs, along with two witnesses, claimed they had a green turn arrow when they entered the intersection. However, Defendant claimed that he had a green light when he entered the intersection. Both Plaintiffs claimed Defendant ran a red light and was negligent in causing the collision. Both Plaintiffs further claimed they suffered soft tissue injuries to their necks and backs and incurred medical bills and other damages as a result of the accident.

Both plaintiffs were treated and released from the emergency room then followed up with the same doctor and had physical therapy for about two months before being released. Two years later, both plaintiffs returned to the same doctor at the same time with the same complaints they related back to the accident two years before. Their doctor testified they suffered cervical and lumbar strains and further testified that all of their treatment and ongoing pain complaints were causally related to the accident. Defendant’s medical expert testified that each plaintiff suffered muscular strains of the neck and back that resolved by the time the plaintiffs’ doctor released them from his care two months after the accident. Plaintiff Wills asked the jury to award her over $13,000 in medical bills, $59,000 for pain and suffering and additional amounts for loss of normal life and emotional distress. Plaintiff Gleason asked the jury to award him over $20,000 for his medical bills, $60,000 for pain and suffering and additional amounts for loss of normal life and emotional distress.

The jury returned a verdict in favor of Plaintiff Gleason in the amount of $16,674.00, itemized as follows: $16,674 for medical bills, $0 for pain and suffering, $0 for loss of normal life and $0 for emotional distress. The jury also found Plaintiff Gleason 25% at fault for the accident, thereby reducing his total recoverable damages to $12,506.00.

The jury returned a verdict in favor of Plaintiff Wills in the amount of $10,250.00, itemized as follows: $10,250.00 for medical bills, $0 for pain and suffering, $0 for loss of normal life, $0 for emotional distress and $0 for lost wages. The jury also found Plaintiff Gleason 25% at fault for Plaintiff Wills’ damages.  
Last Demand:     None
Verdict:     $12,506 for plaintiff Gleason; $10,250 for plaintiff Wills; $2,562.50 for counterdefendant Healy

Related Practice Areas


Oncoming Left Turn Collision
Style of Case: Howard v. Akalan
Client:    Susan Akalan
Trial End Date:    10/24/2013
Court:    Twentieth Judicial Circuit Court of St. Clair County, IL
Type of Case:    Oncoming Left Turn Collision
Judge:    The Honorable Heinz Rudolf
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Joshua N. Severit
Jury Verdict
Plaintiff was traveling eastbound on State Street in East St. Louis, Illinois when his vehicle collided with Defendant’s vehicle, which was making a left turn from westbound State Street onto 25th street. Each party believed the other person was responsible for the collision. Defendant argued she had the green arrow prior to making a left turn onto 25th street. Plaintiff, however, believed he had a green light the entire time. Plaintiff relied on eyewitness testimony from an individual who “allegedly” was behind the Defendant before she turned onto 25th street. The witness testified she had a green light, not a green arrow. Yet, the witness was not listed on the police report and the officer who responded to the scene does not recall any witness being present.

Both vehicles sustained moderate to severe damage from the collision. Plaintiff refused medical treatment at the scene and followed up with a chiropractor the following week. Thereafter, he treated with a chiropractor for four months, went to physical therapy for another four months, and treated with two different orthopedists. He claimed injuries to his low back and both knees. His medical bills totaled $10,556.80
Defendant rejected the mandatory arbitration award returned for plaintiff in the amount of $12,000 and proceeded to trial by jury.  
Last Demand:     $23,556.80
Verdict:     Defense Verdict

Related Practice Areas


Action on Insurance Policy
Style of Case: Kay Wacker v. State Farm Insurance Company
Client:    State Farm Fire & Casualty Company
Trial End Date:    10/22/2013
Court:    Twentieth Judicial Circuit Court, St. Clair County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Alleged Breach of Insurance Contract
Judge:    The Honorable Ellen Dauber
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Dominique N. Seymoure
Jury Verdict
The plaintiff's vehicle was broken into while she was shopping at the Kohl's department store in Fairview Heights, Illinois on July 14, 2012. The plaintiff identified several missing items to the responding police officer, ranging in value from zero to $200. The following afternoon, the plaintiff called the police and reported a $2000 pair of diamond earrings and an address book containing $1200 cash was also taken. The plaintiff filed a claim to recover for the replacement value of the diamond earrings, allegedly $4750, under a personal articles policy issued by State Farm Fire & Casualty Company. State Farm investigated the claim and learned the plaintiff had worn the earrings regularly for 20+ years prior to the day of the occurrence and that she placed the earrings in the vehicle the same day in order to take them to a jewelry store the day of the occurrence to obtain a replacement back. The evidence at trial showed the plaintiff failed to advise the responding police officer of the allegedly missing earrings, which was the most valuable item in the vehicle. State Farm ultimately denied the claim because it believed the plaintiff misrepresented the theft of the earrings. The plaintiff filed suit alleging State Farm breached the contract in denying the claim. The jury returned a verdict in favor of State Farm.  
Last Demand:     $3500
Verdict:     Defense Verdict

Related Practice Areas


Three Car Collision
Style of Case: Janet Biggs and Michael Biggs vs. Elisabeth Wyatt and Sheryl Scheibal
Client:    Elisabeth Wyatt
Trial End Date:    10/18/2013
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit, Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Personal Injury Auto Collision
Judge:    The Honorable David Hylla
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Tori L. Walls
Jury Verdict
Defendant Sheryl Scheibal was travelling southbound on Illinois Route 157 at the intersection of the entrance/exit ramp of I55/70 at the same time Defendant Elisabeth Wyatt was travelling northbound on Illinois Route 157 at the same intersection. As Defendant Wyatt was making a left turn onto the entrance ramp, her vehicle was struck by Defendant Scheibal’s vehicle. Their two vehicles then slid together and came into contact with the plaintiff’s vehicle. The plaintiff filed suit against both defendants claiming the defendants were negligent in causing the accident and claiming she suffered injuries to her low back, neck, both knees, both elbows and suffered depression and anxiety as a result of the accident. Plaintiff also claimed she was unable to return to work as a medical biller/coder following the accident. Her husband, Michael Biggs, filed a claim against both defendants for a loss of consortium.

Testimony established the plaintiff had a long history of pre-existing low back pain. The jury heard testimony from several of the plaintiff’s medical providers, three of whom testified the plaintiff could return to work within four months of the accident. The jury also heard testimony from the defendants’ medical expert who opined that the plaintiff suffered a cervical and lumbar strain as a result of the accident that resolved and also opined the plaintiff could have returned to work. The plaintiff asked for over $27,000 in past medical bills, and also requested future medical bills, past and future lost wages, past and future pain and suffering, and past and future loss of normal life. If the jury believed the plaintiff suffered a cervical and lumbar strain, Defendants suggested the jury should award $25,000 for the past medical bills, only four months of lost wages ($8,000), and a minimal amount for pain and suffering and loss of normal life. Defendants suggested the jury should award no future damages and find in favor of the defendants on the loss of consortium claim.

After over two hours of deliberation, the jury found in favor of Plaintiff Janet Biggs and awarded her a total of $33,850.00; itemized as follows: $25,000 medical bills, $8,250 lost wages, $300 pain and suffering and $300 loss of normal life. The jury found both defendants were negligent and split liability at 60% Defendant Wyatt and 40% Defendant Scheibal. The jury found in favor of the defendants on the loss of consortium claim.  
Last Demand:     $75,000.00 each defendant ($150,000 total); Defense verdict on Michael Biggs claim
Verdict:     $20,310 against Wyatt ($33,850.00 total verdict)

Related Practice Areas


Pro Se Plaintiff; Rear End Auto
Style of Case: Rolanda Pearson v. Vic Hamer
Client:    Vic Hamer
Trial End Date:    10/1/2013
Court:    22nd Circuit Court, St. Louis City, Missouri
Type of Case:    Rear End Auto
Judge:    The Honorable Mark H. Neill
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  William B. Starnes II
Jury Verdict
On southbound Kingshighway near Barnes Jewish Hospital in St. Louis, Missouri, in congested traffic, the defendant proceeded toward a green light, looked down for a second, and looked back up too late to avoid colliding his Ford pickup truck, with attached and empty livestock trailer, into the rear end of plaintiff´s 2004 Toyota Camry. Though the light was green, plaintiff was stopped behind the first vehicle in line at the light which failed to proceed forward when the light changed to green. The driver in front of plaintiff left the scene. There was moderately severe damage to the Toyota. The plaintiff refused medical treatment at the scene but went to the emergency room later that day after which she rented a car and drove around. Plaintiff tried the case pro se. She introduced photographs of her injuries and vehicle damage but failed to get into evidence her medical bills of $3,023, the medical records, or the value of her vehicle. She sustained pain and brusing to her arms, back, and knees which have resolved. No medical witnesses testified.

Plaintiff requested the jury award $31,000 for her personal injuries. The jury returned a verdict for plaintiff in the amount of $2,500 for personal injuries and $2,500 for property damage. The property damage award was setoff to $-0- by virtue of a prior payment, so the net verdict was $2,500 for personal injuries only.  
Last Demand:     $15,000
Verdict:     $2,500 for plaintiff

Related Practice Areas


Trip & Fall; Hip Fracture
Style of Case: Rodgers v. Paynic Home for Funerals
Client:    Home for Funerals
Trial End Date:    7/15/2013
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit, Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Premises Liability / Negligence
Judge:    The Honorable Thomas Chapman
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Martin K. Morrissey
Jury Verdict
Plaintiff estate representative claimed her mother sustained a hip fracture falling on a curb near the entry area of the funeral home. Plaintiff alleged the configuration of the entry was inappropriate for patrons and the lighting in the region insufficient. Plaintiff claimed medical bills of $33,000.00 and another $45,000.00 in damages for pain and loss of normal life. Defendant argued no liability as there was no defect in the premises, and the patron had voluntarily encountered an obvious condition.  
Last Demand:      
Verdict:     Not guilty.

Related Practice Areas


Dram Shop; Barroom Brawl; Skull Fracture
Style of Case: Marvin and Gina Allen vs. Tisa Winfree d/b/a Teezer’s
Client:    Tisa Winfree d/b/a Teezer’s
Trial End Date:    6/19/2013
Court:    Twentieth Judicial Circuit Court of St. Clair County, IL
Type of Case:    Dram Shop, Negligence
Judge:    The Honorable Vincent Lopinot
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Michael C. Hobin
Jury Verdict
Plaintiffs brought common law negligence and Dram Shop Act claims against Teezer’s (a Collinsville, IL bar) essentially claiming the bar did not provide adequate security and/or failed to timely phone the police.

Plaintiffs were patrons of Teezer’s and claimed to merely have been playing darts when Mr. Allen was slammed to the concrete floor by an alleged intoxicated patron (AIP). He got up but was once again slammed to the ground by another AIP striking his head on the pool table on his way down. His wife Mrs. Allen then jumped into the brawl before the two AIPs and a friend left the scene. One AIP fled on foot and got away. The other AIP was apprehended down the road as a passenger in a traffic stop; he was charged with misdemeanor battery but not public intoxication. The Allen’s both testified the Teezer’s bartender was drinking shots with the AIPs in the bar before the incident (which the bartender denied). In plaintiffs’ case in chief, the bartender testified the AIPs were not intoxicated when the physical altercation occurred requesting clarification as follows: “You mean were they drunk? Or drunk, drunk?” Plaintiffs’ counsel honed in on the bartender’s concession the AIPs were trouble in general (having known them since early childhood) and problem drinkers but explained that is why she “never, ever served them shots” before the incident. Mrs. Allen broke down crying when recalling the precise second she looked at her unconscious husband on the concrete floor of Teezer’s. A defense rebuttal fact witness, another patron of Teezer’s on the night in question and pre-incident bar acquaintance of Mrs. Allen, contradicted some of Mrs. Allen’s testimony concerning both negligence and damages.

As to the Dram Shop counts, the only evidence of AIP intoxication came from plaintiffs themselves. As to the negligence counts, defendant argued the sole proximate cause of the physical altercation was either Mrs. Allen (for bringing the AIPs back into the bar after the bartender asked them to leave) or the AIPs.

Mr. Allen had more than $26,000 medical bills. He was ambulanced from one hospital to another and remained hospitalized two days with a skull fracture, broken ankle and loss of hearing. He was off work for three months with lost wages of approximately $10,000. Mrs. Allen had a consortium claim. After deliberating for approximately ten minutes the jury returned defense verdicts on all claims.  
Last Demand:     $80,000
Verdict:     Defense Verdict on Dram Shop and Negligence Claims

Related Practice Areas


Breach of Insurance Contract/Vexatious Refusal
Style of Case: Raymere Oglesby v. Country Mutual Insurance Company
Client:    Country Mutual Insurance Company
Trial End Date:    6/5/2013
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit, Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Breach of Insurance Contract/Vexatious Refusal
Judge:    The Honorable Thomas Chapman
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Tori L. Walls
Jury Verdict
BENCH TRIAL VERDICT

The plaintiff claimed Country Mutual Insurance Company breached the terms of her homeowner’s insurance policy by refusing to pay the full amount she believed she was owed under the policy for the costs of accessing her sewer line to determine the cause of a sewer backup in her basement. The plaintiff further claimed that Country’s refusal to pay the full amount she claimed was vexatious. The parties stipulated and agreed that repair of the compromised sewer line was not a covered loss under the policy and further stipulated and agreed that the only covered loss was costs for accessing the sewer line in order to make the determination that the sewer line was compromised and the costs of concrete to re-cover that specific access point. The plaintiff introduced an invoice into evidence from the plumber who repaired the sewer line indicating that 20 feet of concrete was removed and 20 feet of sewer line was exposed and repaired. It was the plaintiff’s position that the entire 20 feet of concrete was removed for the sole purpose of determining whether the line was clogged, deteriorated or otherwise compromised by wear and tear. The plaintiff claimed she was owed a total of $6,240.00. The plaintiff presented testimony from a plumber who had inspected the property a few days before the trial but was not the plumber who performed the work listed in the invoice. The testifying plumber had no personal knowledge of whether or not the plumber who did the work determined the sewer line was compromised after simply putting a camera in the line or whether only a couple feet of the sewer line had to be exposed to make that determination. The Country claims supervisor testified that Country had previously compensated the plaintiff for costs associated with clean-up of her basement as well as for some of the concrete costs associated with accessing the sewer line. The claims supervisor testified that a Country claims adjuster wrote an estimate for accessing the sewer line and repairing that portion of the concrete, but had only accounted for 4 feet of concrete removal, because a determination of whether the sewer line was compromised could be made from a 4 foot access point versus exposing 20 feet of sewer line to make that determination. It was Country’s position that pursuant to the policy, the only additional amount owed to the plaintiff was $1,535.40. The evidence showed that Country had offered to pay that amount to the plaintiff but the plaintiff rejected the offer.

The court awarded the plaintiff, which is the amount Country agreed the plaintiff was entitled to under the insurance policy and the amount defense counsel recommended the court award. The court further found in favor of Country on the vexatious refusal claim.  
Last Demand:     $2,500.00
Verdict:     Defense Verdict on Vexatious Refusal; $1,535.40 for plaintiff

Related Practice Areas


T-Bone Collision, Headaches, Spine, Emotional Injury
Style of Case: Taylor Dahms vs. Brandy Blackwell
Client:    Brandy Blackwell
Trial End Date:    5/30/2013
Court:    Seventh Judicial Circuit, Jersey County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Personal Injury Auto; Admitted Negligence
Judge:    The Honorable Eric S. Pistorius
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Michael C. Hobin
Jury Verdict
Plaintiff and defendant were high school classmates when the vehicular collision occurred in rural Jersey County. Defendant t-boned the plaintiff vehicle causing an air bag to deploy in plaintiff’s face. Defendant admitted negligence. Plaintiff was ambulanced to a nearby ER where she denied being injured. Plaintiff began treating with a chiropractor she had seen pre-accident on the morning after the collision. She claimed headaches, spinal problems and emotional/psychological damages resulted from the collision. Plaintiff called upon 5 medical doctors, her clinical psychologist and chiropractor of many years to testify during her case in chief. Plaintiff and her father also testified. Defendant called upon a medical examiner hired to testify at trial as well as two fact witnesses (plaintiff’s former dance instructor and cheerleading coach). Plaintiff suggested the jury return a verdict between $130,000 and $150,000.The jury returned a verdict of $2,132.44 for medical bills and $2,159.31 for pain and suffering.  
Last Demand:      
Verdict:     $4,291.65 for Plaintiff

Related Practice Areas


2012

Sideswipe Automobile Accident
Style of Case: Chapman v. Razeghi
Client:    Emily Razeghi
Trial End Date:    8/13/2012
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit Court, Madison County
Type of Case:    Sideswipe Automobile Accident
Judge:    The Honorable Thomas Chapman
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Joshua N. Severit
Jury Verdict
Plaintiff and defendant were traveling in the same direction on Collinsville Crossing Road in Collinsville, Illinois when their vehicles made contact. Defendant was in the left lane and plaintiff in the right lane. Defendant claimed plaintiff changed lanes into his vehicle as he began to enter the center turn lane. Plaintiff claimed defendant lost control of his vehicle in the snow and slid from the left lane into the right lane. Both vehicles incurred minimal damage. Plaintiff refused medical treatment at the scene but went to the emergency room the following day. Thereafter, he treated with a chiropractor for almost three months. Plaintiff claimed injuries to his neck and low back. His medical bills and lost wages totaled $7,529.18.

Defendant rejected the mandatory arbitration award returned for plaintiff in the amount of $20,000 and proceeded to trial by jury. The jury found plaintiff’s contributory negligence was 49% the proximate cause of the accident and returned a net verdict for $4,063.00.  
Last Demand:     None
Verdict:     $4,063.00

Related Practice Areas


Rear-end Auto, Interstate
Style of Case: Bandy v. Wehmeyer
Client:    Linda K. Wehmeyer
Trial End Date:    6/20/2012
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit Court, Madison County
Type of Case:    Rear-end Auto, Interstate
Judge:    The Honorable Thomas Chapman
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Dominique N. Seymoure
Jury Verdict
While driving to work on Interstate 55/70 near Collinsville, Illinois in stop-and-go traffic, the defendant mistakenly drove forward when the traffic in front of her had not yet started moving. The defendant’s vehicle hit the rear of another vehicle that was then pushed into the rear of the plaintiff’s vehicle. There was minimal damage to all three involved vehicles. The plaintiff refused medical treatment at the scene but then went to two emergency rooms the day of the accident. She started treating with a chiropractor two days later that referred her to a pain management physician and an orthopedic physician. The plaintiff claimed injuries to her neck, left arm and low back. She incurred medical bills of $15,505.11. Treating physicians testified the accident caused the plaintiff’s alleged injuries. Defendant’s expert medical witness testified it was likely the plaintiff suffered a cervical strain and that the plaintiff’s ongoing complaints were not caused by the accident but were due to the degenerative condition in her neck.

Defendant rejected the mandatory arbitration award returned for plaintiff in the amount of $25,000 and proceeded to trial by jury.  
Last Demand:     $55,000
Verdict:     $18,255.11

Related Practice Areas


Motor Vehicle - Pedestrian Accident
Style of Case: Mary Lynn Dixon vs. .William Maggart
Client:    William Maggart
Trial End Date:    6/13/2012
Court:    3rd Judicial Circuit, Madison County, IL
Type of Case:    Motor Vehicle — Pedestrian Accident
Judge:    The Honorable David Hylla
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  James L. Hodges
Jury Verdict
The plaintiff and her friend were crossing Illinois State Highway 159 in Glen Carbon near the intersection of 159 and Brenda, at approximately 7:00 A.M. during the morning rush hour, when she was struck by the vehicle operated by defendant. The plaintiff was crossing a 5 lane highway ½ mile outside the crosswalk with heavy traffic. The Defendant was in his vehicle at Brenda St., waiting to make a left hand turn onto northbound route 159. The Plaintiff had stopped in the center turn lane waiting for southbound traffic to pass. The testimony at trial was that the defendant looked left and right multiple times but could not see the plaintiff in the roadway because of the traffic and the sun. When defendant pulled out to make his turn, his vehicle struck the plaintiff while she was standing in the center turn lane. Plaintiff claimed injury to her right knee, right foot and ankle and to her head. She treated with 2 orthopedic physicians for her alleged injuries and claimed medical bills totaling $29,799.17.  
Last Demand:     $129,799.17
Verdict:     For defendant

Related Practice Areas


Rear-end Auto, Soft-tissue Injury
Style of Case: Anderson v. Stephens
Client:    Myra Stephens
Trial End Date:    4/9/2012
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit, Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Rear-end Auto, Soft-tissue injury
Judge:    The Honorable Thomas Chapman
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Joshua N. Severit
Jury Verdict
Plaintiff was stopped in the left turn lane at the intersection of Route 140 and Route 111 in Bethalto, Illinois when the defendant struck the rear of her vehicle at a very low rate of speed. She claimed a muscle strain to her left rhomboid muscle as a result of the contact. Plaintiff’s medical bills totaled $5,910.81.

The defendant denied she was negligent and that she proximately caused plaintiff’s alleged damages. She was at a complete stop approximately a half-car length behind the plaintiff when she sneezed, causing her foot to slip off the brake and bump into the Plaintiff’s vehicle. The defense established that the plaintiff could not have been injured from such minor contact.  
Last Demand:     $8,000.00
Verdict:     Defense Verdict

Related Practice Areas


Uninsured Motorist Hit and Run
Style of Case: Tomi England v. State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company
Client:    State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company
Trial End Date:    2/27/2012
Court:    Twentieth Judicial Circuit, St. Clair County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Uninsured Motorist Hit and Run
Judge:    The Honorable Stephen McGlynn
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Tori L. Walls
Jury Verdict
The plaintiff claimed that she was travelling on St. Clair Avenue in East St. Louis when she was struck from behind by an unknown/hit-and-run vehicle, which caused her to lose control of her vehicle and ultimately crash. She made a claim for uninsured motorist benefits pursuant to her automobile insurance policy with State Farm. State Farm denied that it owed uninsured motorist benefits to the plaintiff on the grounds that there was no contact between the plaintiff’s vehicle and any unknown vehicle prior to her crashing. The only issue the jury had to decide was whether an unknown vehicle came into contact with the plaintiff’s vehicle prior to her crashing. Pursuant to the applicable policy, if the jury found there was such contact, then the plaintiff would be entitled to uninsured motorist benefits. If the jury found there was no contact, the plaintiff would not be entitled to uninsured motorist benefits.

The jury heard testimony from the plaintiff regarding her version of the accident as well as testimony from three independent witnesses who testified they never saw any other vehicles around the plaintiff’s vehicle prior to her crashing.

The jury returned a finding that the plaintiff’s vehicle was not struck by an unknown vehicle prior to her crashing, finding in favor of State Farm.  
Last Demand:     Not applicable
Verdict:     Defense Verdict

Related Practice Areas


2011

Rear End Auto; Ganglion Cyst
Style of Case: Carla Buckman, Individually and as Guardian and Next Friend of Cristle Buckman, a minor an Cole Buckman, a minor vs. Frank Roman
Client:    Frank Roman
Trial End Date:    11/8/2011
Court:    3rd Judicial Circuit, Madison County, IL
Type of Case:    Rear End Auto; Ganglion Cyst
Judge:    The Honorable Thomas Chapman
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  James L. Hodges
Jury Verdict
The plaintiff was stopped in traffic with her two small children in the back seat of her vehicle, when she was rear-ended by the defendant. The defendant admitted negligence. As a result of the impact, plaintiff Carla Buckman claimed she sustained injury to her neck, back and right wrist. She further claimed that the impact caused her to develop a ganglion cyst on her right wrist that required surgical intervention. She also contends that the impact caused her 2 year old and 4 year old to sustain neck/back injuries for which they treated with a chiropractor. Carla accumulated $17,768.12 in medical bills; Cole, $1,677.00; and Cristle, $1800.34 in bills.  
Last Demand:     Carla: $36,245.88; Cristle: $2,000.00; Cole: $2,000.00
Verdict:     Carla: $13,334.70; Cristle: $1,000.00; Cole: $1,000.00

Related Practice Areas


Related Practice Areas



Tow Truck Rear End Collision; Admitted Liability
Style of Case: Lisa Going v. Hahne’s TGIF Towing, LLC
Client:    Hahne’s TGIF Towing, LLC
Trial End Date:    11/1/2011
Court:    3rd Judicial Circuit, Madison County, IL
Type of Case:    Tow Truck Rear End Collision; Admitted Liability
Judge:    The Honorable Dennis Ruth
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  James L. Hodges
Jury Verdict
On October 6, 2004 the Plaintiff was stopped at a red light when the defendant’s tow truck struck the rear of her vehicle. The defendant admitted liability. The plaintiff claimed that as a result of this impact she sustained injuries to her neck, back, jaw and ultimately was diagnosed with fibromyalgia from this accident. Prior to 2004, the plaintiff had been involved in two very serious motor vehicle accidents resulting in significant traumas to her body, and the plaintiff claimed that these prior conditions were aggravated by the negligence of the defendant. The plaintiff accumulated $18,850.86 in medical bills.  
Last Demand:     $40,000.00
Verdict:     $7,000.00
Emergency Response Motor Vehicle Accident
Style of Case: City of Wood River v. Johna L. Anderson
Client:    Johna L. Anderson
Trial End Date:    9/30/2011
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit Court of Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Emergency Response Motor Vehicle Accident
Judge:    Mandatory Arbitration
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Joshua N. Severit
Jury Verdict
Plaintiff, by and through its employee, Wood River police officer Joshua Timmins, claimed that Ms. Johna Anderson failed to yield to his emergency vehicle as he was responding to a domestic violence call. Officer Timmins claimed he stopped at a red light with his emergency lights activated, hit his siren one time, and waited for traffic to clear before he proceeded through the red light into the intersection. Defendant Johna Anderson had a green light, however, and was unable to see the emergency vehicle prior to the accident due to heavy traffic. Officer Timmins sustained bodily injuries and his police vehicle was damaged as a result of the accident.

Defendant Anderson denied she was liable for the accident. She argued that Officer Timmins violated the Wood River Police Department guidelines and protocol for responding to emergency calls. The guidelines required that an officer activate both the emergency lights and siren when responding to an emergency call. Yet, Officer Timmins admitted that he only activated his siren only one time. At least two witnesses at the scene, along with Defendant Anderson, testified that they did not hear a siren at the intersection.  
Last Demand:     $11,323.93
Verdict:     Defense Verdict

Related Practice Areas


Cervical & Lumbar Fusion; Rear End Auto
Style of Case: Betty Weckman v. Dorothy Bonn
Client:    Dorothy Bonn
Trial End Date:    9/21/2011
Court:    3rd Judicial Circuit, Madison County, IL
Type of Case:    Cervical & Lumbar Fusion; Rear End Auto
Judge:    The Honorable David Hylla
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  James L. Hodges
Jury Verdict
The plaintiff stopped her vehicle as the car in front of her stopped to turn left; the defendant hit her brakes, but still made contact with the rear of plaintiff’s vehicle. There was no visible damage to either car. Plaintiff claimed this contact caused her to have pain in her neck and back. She was diagnosed and treated for a herniated disc at C5-6 requiring a discectomy, inter-body fusion and plate stabilization; and, lumbar segmental dysfunction at L2-3 requiring a bilateral pedicle screw fixation and fusion. She accumulated $180,000.00 in medical bills. Treating physicians testified that the rear-end accident caused her injuries. Defendant´s expert orthopedic surgeon testified that such a low speed impact could not have caused these injuries or the need for the surgical treatments. It was his opinion that plaintiff had pre-existing degenerative conditions in her neck and back that may have been aggravated by this impact.  
Last Demand:     $325,000.00
Verdict:     $82,650.00

Related Practice Areas


Side Swipe Auto, Soft Tissue Injuries
Style of Case: Peggie Thompson v. Christopher Hogan
Client:    Christopher Hogan
Trial End Date:    7/26/2011
Court:    20th Judicial Circuit, St. Clair County, IL
Type of Case:    Side Swipe Auto, Soft Tissue Injuries
Judge:    The Honorable Robert B. Haida
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  James L. Hodges
Jury Verdict
The plaintiff was stopped at the end of a line of cars waiting at a red light when the defendant attempted to pass on the left to enter the left turn lane. The rear right wheel of the defendant’s vehicle struck the plaintiff’s vehicle at the left rear quarter panel. Plaintiff claimed that this contact caused her to have pain in her neck, mid back and right wrist. Her injuries were soft tissue, neck sprain/strain, back sprain/strain and wrist sprain. She accumulated medical bills of $6,322.09. The defense established that plaintiff was not injured to the extent she claimed and that she did not sustain any disability or suffer any pain and suffering from this minor contact.  
Last Demand:     $10,000.00
Verdict:     $3,161.00 (50% of medical bills only)

Related Practice Areas


Rollover Accident; Scar Revision
Style of Case: Tayler Francis v. Ryan Barnett
Client:    Ryan Barnett
Trial End Date:    6/20/2011
Court:    3rd Judicial Circuit, Madison County, IL
Type of Case:    Rollover Accident; Scar Revision
Judge:    The Honorable Thomas Chapman
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  James L. Hodges
Jury Verdict
Plaintiff, the front seat passenger of defendant’s vehicle, alleged the defendant was traveling in excess of the speed limit and “hill hopping”, when he lost control of his vehicle and rolled off the road into a ditch. Defendant contended that he was traveling the speed limit, and that a deer ran onto the roadway, crossing in front of his vehicle. When Defendant swerved to avoid striking the deer, he lost control of his vehicle, and it rolled off the road into a ditch. Two other passengers testified at the trial. One confirmed the plaintiff’s version and one conformed the defendant’s version. The plaintiff claimed she sustained injuries to her left knee and right wrist, and a scar revision to a 2cm x 1.4 cm scar was performed on the ulnar side of the right wrist.
Plaintiff accumulated $10,935.63 in medical bills but did not establish any disability, disfigurement or pain and suffering.  
Last Demand:     $45,935.63
Verdict:     $10,935.63

Related Practice Areas


Dram Shop - Brawl Outside of Tavern
Style of Case: Derendinger vs. Mega Leasing Corp., d/b/a Pop's Saloon
Client:    Mega Leasing Corp., d/b/a Pop&'s Saloon
Trial End Date:   3/9/2011
Court:    Twentieth Judicial Circuit, St. Clair County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Personal Injury - Dram Shop
Judge:    The Honorable Robert Haida
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  James L. Hodges
Jury Verdict
The plaintiff claimed that while he was outside of Pop's Saloon, Mr. Jamie Vogler approached him, and without provocation physically assaulted him. Plaintiff claimed that Mr. Vogler had consumed alcohol inside Pop's and as a result was intoxicated. The Plaintiff claimed that the alcohol was sold or given to Mr. Vogler by Pop's employees. As a result of the beating plaintiff sustained a closed head injury, chipped teeth and bruises on his face. He was treated at Kenneth Hall Regional Hospital and St. Louis University Hospital and accumulated medical bills of $14,000. Mega Leasing Corp., was able to establish that it did not cause Mr. Vogler's intoxication and therefore was not the cause of plaintiff's alleged injuries.  
Last Demand:    $50,000.00
Verdict:    Verdict: Defense verdict (jury deliberated for 20 minutes)

Related Practice Areas


Premises Fall Injury, Fractured Transverse Process
Style of Case: Lambert v. Coonrod
Client:    Tim Coonrod
Trial End Date:   2/17/2011
Court:    Seventh Judicial Circuit Court, Macoupin County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Personal Injury - Premises
Judge:    The Honorable Patrick Londrigan
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Dominique N. Seymoure
Jury Verdict
The plaintiffs claimed Richard Lambert fell while helping the defendant take Halloween decorations out of a portable storage shed at the defendant's home in Carlinville, Illinois. Richard Lambert testified the defendant stood upon an empty wooden wire-spool to reach items on a loft in the shed before instructing Lambert to step up on the spool himself to retrieve additional items. The plaintiffs argued the defendant was in control of the project and that he was negligent in not providing Lambert with a safe and stable platform and in failing to warn him the spool could be unstable or tip easily.

The plaintiff's fall resulted in a fractured transverse process in the lumbar spine and a fractured rib. The plaintiff was off work for two months before returning full-time to his job as a laborer/steelworker at a local steel warehouse.

Although the defendant conceded Lambert fell, landing on the spool on his back, the defendant denied instructing Lambert to stand on the spool and he further denied ever seeing Lambert on the spool before the fall. The defendant argued that if anyone was at fault for the fall, it was Lambert himself in standing upon the spool despite knowing it was not designed as step stool and despite his failure to test the stability of the spool before stepping onto it.  
Last Demand:    $38,850.00
Verdict:    Defense Verdict

Related Practice Areas


2010

Alcohol Impairment; Personal Injury Auto; Contributory negligence
Style of Case: Ryan Mueller v. Nicole Beer
Client:    Nicole Beer
Trial End Date:   9/17/2010
Court:    4th Judicial Circuit, Clinton County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Alcohol Impairment; Personal Injury Auto; Contributory negligence
Judge:    The Honorable Douglas Garman
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Martin K. Morrissey
Jury Verdict
Plaintiff and Defendant were involved in a vehicular accident during the early morning hours in rural Clinton County, Illinois. Plaintiff was a passenger in his own truck and alleged the defendant drove his truck off the road into a concrete culvert causing him injury. Plaintiff experienced a serious foot injury, two surgeries for fracture, and he claimed medical specials of $95,000 with lost wages of $40,000. Defendant admitted fault but alleged that the plaintiff was significantly contributorily negligent in allowing her to drive his truck while they were both under the influence of alcohol; that his own negligence caused his injury.

At trial, plaintiff asked the jury to award $250,000 for his medical bills, loss of income, and pain and suffering. The jury returned a verdict for the defendant. Plaintiff's post trial motion was recently denied.  
Last Demand:    $190,000
Verdict:    Defense Verdict

Related Practice Areas


Rear-End Auto; Directed Liability
Style of Case: Stanley Carnahan III vs. Katie M. Mense
Client:    Katie M. Mense
Trial End Date:   5/27/2010
Court:    20th Judicial Circuit, St. Clair County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Rear-End Auto; Directed Liability
Judge:    The Honorable Richard Aguirre
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Michael C. Hobin

Jury Verdict
On January 18, 2006, plaintiff and defendant were involved in an automobile accident in Shiloh. Defendant rear-ended the plaintiff vehicle. Plaintiff was granted summary judgment as to negligence, leaving damages as the only issue for the jury to consider.

During trial, plaintiff's counsel called all of his witnesses live. His three witnesses were the plaintiff, the plaintiff's wife and Dr. George Schoedinger, III. Medical expenses largely consisted of negative diagnostic testing, and plaintiff's injury was essentially soft tissue neck and shoulder strain. During closing arguments, defense counsel suggested an award of $7,736 while plaintiff's counsel suggested an award of $50,000. After nearly two hours of deliberation, the jury returned with an award of $8,736 including Medical bills of $4,500, Lost wages of $1,236, Past pain & suffering of $2,000, Future pain & suffering of $0, Past loss of normal life of $1,000, and Future loss of normal life of $0.  
Last Demand:    $45,000
Verdict:    $8,736

Related Practice Areas


Auto - Pedestrian Accident; School Zone; Brain Injury
Style of Case: Cecil W. Dial, Jr. vs. Brad Joiner and Edwardsville Community School District
Client:    Brad Joiner
Trial End Date:   5/21/2010
Court:    Circuit Court, Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Auto - Pedestrian Accident; School Zone; Brain Injury
Judge:    The Honorable Clarence Harrison
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Stephen C. Mudge
Jury Verdict
After a five day trial, a Madison County Jury returned a not guilty verdict for the defendant. The plaintiff, who was a pedestrian, and in a school zone, had alleged that the defendant failed to keep a proper lookout, was distracted by an object sliding on his dashboard, and was operating his vehicle too fast in a school zone and, as a result, negligently struck the plaintiff who sustained a severe brain injury.

The defendant asserted he was not distracted, that the plaintiff had walked out from behind a parked motor vehicle, and was carrying a class project that blocked the plaintiff's view of the defendant. The defendant asserted the plaintiff walked into the side of defendant's vehicle rather than the defendant driving into the plaintiff. Reconstruction witnesses were called on behalf of the plaintiff and the defendant. After deliberating a little more than 2 hours, he jury found in favor of the defendant and awarded no damages. This was a retrial of the case which was originally tried in 2004, which also resulted in a defendant's verdict after which the trial court granted a new trial, and was affirmed by the appellate court.  
Last Demand:    Last offer $20,000. Last demand 3.5 million. Defendant carried $250,000 in liability insurance.
Verdict:    Defendant's verdict

Related Practice Areas


Rear-End Auto; Admitted Negligence; Neck Pain
Style of Case: Judith Mocaby v. Whitney Walden
Client:    Whitney Walden
Trial End Date:   5/11/2010
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit Court, Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Rear-End Auto; Admitted Negligence; Neck Pain
Judge:    The Honorable Tom Chapman
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Dominique N. Seymoure
Jury Verdict
On May 3, 2007, the plaintiff stopped on highway 127 for a train in Pinckneyville, Illinois, when the defendant, directly behind the plaintiff, hit the rear of the plaintiff's truck. At trial, the defendant admitted she was negligent.

The plaintiff claimed injuries to her neck and headaches. The plaintiff claimed her alleged injuries caused her to incur medical bills totaling $4,475.36, which included chiropractic treatment and x-rays. The defendant presented evidence showing the minimal nature of the impact and that the plaintiff did not seek any treatment for more than two weeks after the accident and then another two months thereafter. The plaintiff asked the jury to award her the total of her medical bills and pain suffering at the trial. The jury returned a verdict for the defendant.  
Last Demand:    $2,500.00
Verdict:    Defense Verdict

Related Practice Areas


Related Practice Areas


Rear-end Auto; Chiropractic; Herniated Discs
Style of Case: Michael Pascoe v. Dona Boyer
Client:    Dona Boyer
Trial End Date:   2/9/2010
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit Court, Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Rear-end Auto; Chiropractic; Herniated Discs
Judge:    The Honorable Clarence Harrison
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  James Hodges
Jury Verdict
The plaintiff was a passenger in a vehicle that was rear-ended by defendant's vehicle. The defendant denied he was negligent, that the plaintiff was injured, and that the incident caused plaintiff's subsequent complaints, treatment and damages. Plaintiff received chiropractic treatment one month after the accident for one day, and then for 3 weeks starting 6 weeks after the accident. At that point, Dr. Eavenson released him without restrictions and "pain free" from his diagnosed cervical strain/sprain. Six months later, plaintiff received further treatment from another chiropractor (King) for 14 weeks. An MRI taken 9 months after the accident, while treating with Dr. King, revealed a herniated discs at C4-5 and C6-7 and a bulge at C5-6. Both Chiropractors related all treatment to the motor vehicle accident.

The Plaintiff was examined by with defendant's retained medical expert Dr. David Robson, an orthopedic spine surgeon, who opined that the accident did not cause the herniations and bulge and may not have caused any injury. Dr. Robson found the complaints following the accident to be an aggravation of pre-existing degenerative disc disease.

The medical bills totaled $11,705.65. Defendant rejected an award of $25,000 entered in mandatory arbitration and proceeded to jury trial.  
Last Demand:    $35,119.95
Verdict:    $5,121.00 for the plaintiff

Related Practice Areas


Side Swipe; Personal Injury Auto; Admitted Negligence
Style of Case: Dianne Miller v. Daniel Jolivette
Client:    Daniel Jolivette
Trial End Date:   1/11/2010
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit, Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Side Swipe; Personal Injury Auto; Admitted Negligence
Judge:    The Honorable Tom Chapman
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Tori L. Walls
Jury Verdict
The plaintiff was travelling eastbound on Interstate 270 near McDonnell Blvd. in Missouri. The defendant was travelling in the same direction in the lane directly left of the plaintiff. While attempting to merge into the lane to his left, defendant noticed a car in his blind spot, causing him to swerve back towards his own lane. When he swerved back, he momentarily lost control of his vehicle and sideswiped the plaintiff's vehicle. The defendant admitted that the accident was his fault but denied that the plaintiff was injured to the extent claimed. The plaintiff drove herself to the hospital following the accident and was treated and released. She then waited 19 days before seeking treatment with a chiropractor. She treated for 3 months with the chiropractor for what the chiropractor diagnosed as whiplash to her neck and low back. She missed two days of work.

The plaintiff was awarded $13,000 by the arbitrators pursuant to Madison County's mandatory arbitration system. The plaintiff rejected the arbitration award.

At trial, the plaintiff asked for an award of her medical bills in the amount of $5,775.00, her lost wages in the amount of $230.00, and over $25,000 for pain and suffering and loss of normal life. The jury returned a verdict in favor of the plaintiff in the amount of $7,505.00 ($5,775 medical bills, $1,500 pain and suffering, $230 lost wages, $0 loss of normal life).  
Last Demand:    $18,000
Verdict:    $7,505 for plaintiff

Related Practice Areas



Rollover Crash Aggravating Prior Lumbar Spinal Injuries
Style of Case: Sherri J. Pate v. Patricia Dieu
Client:    Patricia Dieu
Trial End Date:   1/7/2010
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit, Madison County, IL
Type of Case:    Rollover Crash Aggravating Prior Lumbar Spinal Injuries
Judge:    The Honorable Andy Matoesian
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  William B. Starnes II
Jury Verdict
Plaintiff was a passenger and defendant the driver of a Ford Explorer pulling a trailer on which motorcycles were attached by their boyfriend and husband respectively, the back seat passengers. On the interstate, defendant changed to the left lane to pass a tractor trailer and the motorcycles, and ultimately the trailer, began to sway back and forth with increasing severity until the Explorer flipped onto its roof, slid down the interstate, and rolled twice down an embankment landing upright. All occupants were able to get out of the vehicle. Before trial, the court granted partial summary judgment for the plaintiff on the issue of liability preserving for the jury the issue of what damages were caused by the accident.

Before the accident, Plaintiff had 3 successive lumbar surgeries (one discectomy and two fusions) involving L4-5 and L5-S1 due to a prior work accident. At trial, medical evidence was conflicting as to whether plaintiff sustained a permanent or temporary exacerbation of her chronic low back condition and to what extent medical expenses and treatment were related to the accident as opposed to the prior chronic condition.

The jury returned a verdict in the amount of $5,795.56 ($3,995.56 in medical expenses, $900 for pain and suffering, and $900 for loss of normal life). Near the time of initial treatment, $6,296.16 of plaintiff';s medical expenses had been paid on behalf of defendant. Accordingly, the judgment has been setoff to $-0-.  
Last Demand:    $65,000 during trial
Verdict:    $5,795.56 for the plaintiff; Judgment setoff to zero ($-0-).

Related Practice Areas


2009

Rear-End Auto; Directed Liability; Cervical Fusion/ Discectomy
Style of Case: Walter Spearman v. Michael Sunley
Client:    Michael Sunley
Trial End Date:   5/20/2009
Court:    3rd Judicial Circuit, Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Rear-End Auto; Directed Liability; Cervical Fusion/Discectomy
Judge:    The Honorable Dennis Ruth
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Stephen C. Mudge
Jury Verdict
Plaintiff claimed that he sustained a neck injury which resulted in a discectomy and fusion, medical bills, pain and suffering, disfigurement and loss of normal life. The accident occurred on December 11, 2002 and the surgery took place the following March. The case was originally tried to verdict and the jury only awarded medical bills in the amount of $62,807.47 with nothing else awarded for the other claimed elements. The appellate court reversed Judge Nicholas Byron's order denying a new trial. The appellate court ordered a new trial on damages only.

The court in the second trial was incorrectly persuaded by the plaintiff's firm that the issue of medical causation had been decided by the appellate court, and an order was entered barring a medical causation defense. The trial court instructed the jury as well that they had to award the medical bills in the above sum. On retrial, the defendant was barred from introducing evidence on medical causation and also barred from impeaching the plaintiff with the untruthful deposition testimony he gave when he denied he had prior neck problems. The court also severely limited the defense in its cross-examination regarding plaintiff's prior disability. Plaintiff's attorneys requested the jury award $500,000. Notwithstanding these rulings, the jury still awarded just a few hundred dollars less than the offer made in the previous trial.

The verdict in the second trial was $124,807.47, itemized as $62,807.47 as ordered by the judge for medical expenses, $20,000 for future medical expenses, $15,000 for pain and suffering, $15,000 for future pain and suffering, $5,000 for loss of normal life, $15,000 for loss of normal life in the future, and $2,000 for disfigurement. In the second trial, plaintiff was represented by Rodney Caffey, Charles Chapman, Brad Lakin and Dan Cohen of The Lakin Law Firm.  
Last Demand:    $250,000
Verdict:    $124,807.47

Related Practice Areas


Personal Injury Auto; Admitted Negligence
Style of Case: Shelby Graham vs. Kevin Chenault
Client:    Kevin Chenault
Trial End Date:   3/12/2009
Court:    20th Judicial Circuit, St. Clair County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Personal Injury Auto
Judge:    The Honorable Vincent Lopinot
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Michael C. Hobin
Jury Verdict
Defendant admitted negligently causing a vehicular collision on the morning of March 15, 2006. Plaintiff went to the emergency room later that morning and began treating with a physical therapist less than a week later. Further, he claimed he was unable to work as a school district custodian for approximately two months after the collision. Dr. Robert Schultz opined there was a 30% chance plaintiff would need surgery in the future to repair a herniated disc. Defendant did not obtain an independent medical examination.

Defendant rejected a $40,000 award to plaintiff entered pursuant to mandatory arbitration on October 13, 2008. Thereafter a jury awarded plaintiff all of his post accident medical bills ($11,208.97), all of his lost wages ($7,036.50) and $3,000 for his purported pain and suffering but did not award damages for plaintiff's claims of future damages or loss of normal life for a total verdict of $21,245.47.  
Last Demand:    $34,000
Verdict:    $21,245.47 for plaintiff

Related Practice Areas


Mold Induced Injury and Property Damage
Style of Case: Linda House vs. Winters Heating/Cooling, Inc
Client:    Winters Heating/Cooling
Trial End Date:   3/12/2009
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit, Madison County, IL
Type of Case:    Personal injury and property damage to home caused by mold
Judge:    The Honorable Barbara Crowder
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Michael J. Bedesky
Jury Verdict
Plaintiff Linda House claimed that defendant Winters Heating was negligent in installing a new furnace in her home. As a result of Defendant's furnace installation her air conditioning allegedly failed to dehumidify the home resulting in mold growth. Defendant's employee admitted that he did not property "seal" the system, allowing un-humidified air to bypass the "a" coil in the furnace. Plaintiff's treating physician, Dr. Kristen Stabell, stated that Plaintiff developed breathing difficulties, a rash and aggravation to her fibromyalgia resulting from the mold infiltration. Stabell claimed that Plaintiff had permanent injury due to the mold exposure. Defendant's expert witness, Dr. Raymond Slavin at St. Louis University found that Plaintiff was reacting to volatile organic compounds (voc's) in the mold and that she should leave her home or remediate the structure.

Both Plaintiff and defense experts agreed that the home needed mold remediation. Defendant claimed that Plaintiff's home had pre-existing moisture infiltration in the basement. Defendant's mold expert testified that there was an ongoing source of moisture in Plaintiff's home. Plaintiff asked the jury to award a total of $360,000 at trial. The jury returned a defense verdict.  
Last Demand:    $150,000
Verdict:    Defense Verdict

Related Practice Areas



Rear-End Auto, Personal Injury, Admitted Negligence
Style of Case: Wendy Swalls v. Maralina Feeney
Client:    Maralina Feeney
Trial End Date:   2/19/2009
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit Court, Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Personal Injury Auto, Rear-end Accident, Admitted Negligence
Judge:    The Honorable Barbara Crowder
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Dominique N. Seymoure
Jury Verdict
Plaintiff was driving a 2004 Ford Escape southbound on Illinois State Route 159 at its intersection with Illinois Route 162 in Maryville, Illinois. The defendant, driving a 1988 Toyota Camry, was also traveling on IL 159 directly behind the plaintiff. The defendant testified she stopped behind the plaintiff and while glancing down to adjust her radio, she saw the cars in the left-turn lane moving. She took her foot off the brake mistakenly thinking the light had changed to green. Her car moved forward and hit the rear of the plaintiff's vehicle. The plaintiff admitted she did not see the defendant at any time prior to the impact but estimated the defendant's speed at 40-45 miles per hour. The plaintiff claimed the accident injured her neck and upper back and caused her to develop de Quervain's tenosynovitis, a condition affecting the tendons that control the thumb, in her left wrist. The defendant admitted she was negligent but denied the plaintiff was injured to the extent claimed. The defendant presented evidence showing the minimal nature of the impact and that the plaintiff did not make complaints about her left wrist when she was seen in the emergency room the following day. The plaintiff asked the jury to award her $100,000 at the trial. The jury returned a verdict for the plaintiff for $12,600.  
Last Demand:    "Something in the low $40,000’s<"
Verdict:    $12,600

Related Practice Areas


Rear-End Auto, Personal Injury, Directed Negligence
Style of Case: Nina Miller v. Paul Cotton
Client:    Paul Cotton
Trial End Date:   2/3/2009
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit Court, Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Personal Injury Auto; Summary Judgment Finding Negligence
Judge:    The Honorable Barbara Crowder
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Dominique N. Seymoure
Jury Verdict
Plaintiff was stopped in a 2000 Toyota Sienna northbound on Illinois State Route 159 at its intersection with Brenda Road in Glen Carbon, Illinois. The defendant, driving a 1989 Ford Taurus, was also traveling on IL 159 directly behind the plaintiff. The defendant rear-ended the plaintiff, pushing her car into the car in front of her. Prior to trial, the Court entered summary judgment in favor of the plaintiff on the issue of the defendant’s negligence, reserving the issues of proximate cause and damages to the jury. The plaintiff claimed the accident caused permanent injuries to her spine from her neck to her low back. The defendant presented evidence showing the plaintiff initially did not seek medical treatment until eight days after the accident and then did not return for treatment for over a year thereafter. The plaintiff asked the jury to award her in excess of $150,000 at the trial. The jury returned a verdict for the plaintiff for $6,000.  
Last Demand:    $50,000
Verdict:    $6,000

Related Practice Areas


2008

Property Damage-Auto; Contributory Negligence
Style of Case: Charles and Celeste Brinker v. Larry Shelton
Client:    Larry Shelton
Trial End Date:   9/23/2008
Court:    20th Judicial Circuit Court, St. Clair County
Type of Case:    Property Damage-Auto; Contributory Negligence
Judge:    The Honorable Ellen Dauber
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Michael C. Hobin
Jury Verdict
Plaintiffs alleged they sustained property damage as a result of defendant's vehicular negligence. Specifically, plaintiff alleged he was traveling west bound and defendant eastbound when defendant took a left turn in front of plaintiffs' vehicle after passing over two solid yellow lines and across three adverse lanes of traffic. Defendant alleged plaintiff failed to keep a proper and sufficient lookout thereby contributing to cause the collision. Plaintiff submitted an estimate for $2,355.33 in property damages. The jury found for plaintiffs, but reduced their finding of $2,355.33 in damages by 30% for a final verdict of $1,648.73.  
Last Demand:    $2,355.33
Verdict:    For plaintiff with finding of 30 % contributory negligence; Net verdict $1648.73

Related Practice Areas


Rear-End Auto Accident; Admitted Negligence
Style of Case: Christopher Klein v. Gitaben Shah
Client:    Gitaben Shah
Trial End Date:   9/9/2008
Court:    Twentieth Judicial Circuit Court, St. Clair County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Personal Injury Auto
Judge:    The Honorable Lloyd Cueto
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Dominique N. Seymoure
Jury Verdict
On April 8, 2004, the plaintiff was stopped waiting to turn right onto Central School Road near its intersection with Illinois Route 159 in Belleville, Illinois, when the defendant, directly behind the plaintiff, failed to stop and hit the rear of the plaintiff's vehicle. At trial, the defendant admitted she was negligent.

The plaintiff claimed injuries to his neck, shoulders and low back causing him to incur medical bills totaling $26,026.96, which included chiropractic treatment, diagnostic testing, and epidural steroid injections. The defendant presented evidence that the plaintiff had a 9-plus year history of neck and low back problems and complaints caused by pre-existing degenerative disease in the joints and discs in his spine. The defendant also presented evidence that the pre-existing degenerative diseases in the plaintiff's spine caused the complaints and treatment the plaintiff sought after the April 2004 accident. The plaintiff asked the jury for a verdict ranging from $89,000 to $110,000 comprising his medical bills, lost wages of $6533.60, $50,000 to $70,000 in pain and suffering and $6533.60 for disability. The jury returned a verdict for the defendant.  
Last Demand:    $50,000
Verdict:    Defense Verdict

Related Practice Areas


Dram Shop; Barroom Brawl; Spleen Operation
Style of Case: Michael Rae vs. The Dawg Haus Bar, Inc.
Client:    The Dawg Haus Bar, Inc.
Trial End Date:   7/17/2008
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit Court, Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Dram Shop and Negligence
Judge:    The Honorable Nicholas G. Byron
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Michael C. Hobin
Jury Verdict
Plaintiff, a patron at The Dawg Haus Bar in rural, northeast Madison County was injured when he attempted to break up a barroom brawl. He filed a claim under the Dram Shop Act claiming an intoxicated person caused his injuries and that defendant contributed to cause the intoxication. Further, he sued for common law negligence claiming the defendant failed to provide adequate security.

Plaintiff sustained substantial blows for which surgery was performed on his spleen, and he was hospitalized for eight days incurring over $36,000 in medical expenses. The jury awarded plaintiff $100,080 in total damages under the dram shop claim. Thereafter, the Court reduced the dram shop award to $58,599.59 pursuant to the statutory limits for injury to the person. On the claim for negligent failure to provide adequate security, the jury returned a verdict for the defendant.  
Last Demand:     
Verdict:    For Plaintiff on Dram Shop claim; Defense Verdict on Negligence Claim

Related Practice Areas


Intersection Crash, Percutaneous Discectomies
Style of Case: Jason Beard v.
Client:    Donald Libell
Trial End Date:   5/20/2008
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit Court, Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Intersection Crash, Directed Verdict on Negligence
Judge:    The Honorable Nicholas G. Byron
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Dominique N. Seymoure
Jury Verdict
On March 31, 2001 at the intersection of Illinois Route 111 and Horseshoe Lake Road in Madison County, the front end of defendant's vehicle struck the side of the plaintiff's vehicle. Plaintiff claimed defendant Don Libell was negligent in the operation of his vehicle in failing to stop for a red light. The Defendant presented evidence that fog impeded his ability to observe the traffic light. Further, the Defendant argued the plaintiff was contributorily negligent in driving to fast for the conditions considering the fog. At trial, the Court determined the Defendant was negligent.

The plaintiff claimed permanent injuries to his low back that caused him to be totally disabled from all forms of employment and caused him to incur medical bills of approximately $35,000. Defendant argued Plaintiff was not injured to the extent he claimed and the majority of his treatment, which included two percutaneous discectomies, and his ongoing complaints were caused by the pre-existing degenerative conditions in his back. Plaintiff asked the jury to award him $1,000,000 at trial. The jury returned a verdict in favor of Plaintiff and his assessed his total damages at $100,000. The jury also determined the plaintiff was 30% contributorily negligent, thus reducing the verdict to $70,000.  
Last Demand:    $100,000 (withdrawn)
Verdict:    $70,000

Related Practice Areas


Motorcycle Crash, Contributory Negligence
Style of Case: Steven Reed v. Jackson Kimangu
Client:    Jackson Kimangu & St. Louis County Cab
Trial End Date:   2/20/2008
Court:    20th Judicial Circuit Court, St. Clair County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Motorcycle Crash, Contributory Negligence
Judge:    The Honorable Patrick Young
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  William B. Starnes II
Jury Verdict
Jackson Kimangu was an independent cab driver for St. Louis County Cab. St. Louis County Cab was previously dismissed on motion for summary judgment because the cab driver was an independent contractor. Defendant had a yield sign at south bound 25th Street where it merged into South bound Caseyville Avenue in East St. Louis, Illinois. Caseyville Avenue traffic had the right of way. Defendant testified he looked twice to his left and saw no traffic approaching before he committed to enter the intersection. His vision was partially obstructed by a World War I Monument. He then saw plaintiff's motorcycle proceeding toward him at a high rate of speed (estimated at 70 mph in a 35 mph zone). The motorcycle struck the rear left door of the taxi cab. The plaintiff motorcyclist could not remember the accident.

Plaintiff's undisputed medical expenses were just under $28,000 for multiple non-operated facial fractures, toe fracture, abraisions, lacerations, and hematomas. In addition he sought recovery for wage loss, pain, loss of normal life and disfigurement.

The jury found for plaintiff awarding all medical expenses and an amount for pain and suffering but no other elements of damages. The jury found plaintiff to be 49 percent at fault. The net verdict for plaintiff was $32,000. Defendant had offered to pay medical expenses only before trial.  
Last Demand:    $300,000
Verdict:    $32,000 for plaintiff.

Related Practice Areas


2007

Race Track; Traumatic Brain Injury; Fractures
Style of Case: Wayne Carson v. Madison County Fair Association
Client:    Madison County Fair Association
Trial End Date:   12/17/2007
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit Court, Madison County
Type of Case:    Personal Injury - Race Track
Judge:    The Honorable Ralph Mendelsohn
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Michael J. Bedesky
Jury Verdict
Plaintiff, Wayne Carson was hit by a wheel from a "hornet" class racecar at the Highland Speedway. Plaintiff was in the "pit" area when the accident occurred. The lug nuts on the right front wheel of the Hornet car were improperly tightened, resulting in stud failure. The wheel flew over the pit area fence and struck Plaintiff on the back of the head. This resulted in nasal fractures, orbital fractures and a subarachnoid hemorrhage.

Plaintiff was hospitalized for 33 days total at St. Louis University and St. Mary's Hospital. After additional rehabilitation by a speech pathologist Plaintiff was left with residual cognitive deficits, short term memory loss, dizziness and depression. Plaintiff was permanently disabled from his occupation as a truck mechanic. Plaintiff incurred approximately $170,000 in medical bills.

Plaintiff retained two liability experts but only called one at trial. His expert argued that the racetrack should have required a right front reinforced wheel and heavier studs for the Hornet class cars. All other class of racecars at the track were required to have the right front reinforced wheel and larger studs. However, no other track in Southern Illinois had such a requirement. Further, the pit area fence was roughly the same height as other tracks in Southern Illinois.

The trial Court allowed admission of the track's liability insurance application with K&K Insurance. This application indicated that all classes of racecars, including Hornets had right front reinforced wheels. Since this was not the case the Court allowed the exhibit as impeachment. The Court further allowed evidence that the track had raised the fence following the accident. Plaintiffs also presented exhibits showing the top of the pit fence in serious disrepair with numerous missing strands of wire.  
Last Demand:    None
Verdict:    Defense Verdict

Related Practice Areas


Rear End Auto Accident; Rotator Cuff
Style of Case: Felicia Rohmann v. Terrence Yobby
Client:    Terrence Yobby
Trial End Date:   11/14/2007
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit Court, Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Personal Injury - Auto
Judge:    The Honorable Tom Chapman
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Dominique N. Seymoure
Jury Verdict
On September 3, 2004 the plaintiff was driving a 2003 Chevy Cavalier on 21st Street at its intersection with Edwardsville Road in Granite City, Illinois. The defendant, driving a 1996 Mustang, was also traveling on 21st Street directly behind the plaintiff. Both vehicles were initially stopped for a stop sign. The plaintiff, intending to turn to the right, started to proceed and the defendant took his foot off the brake and looked to his left for oncoming traffic. The plaintiff then stopped and the defendant's car struck the rear of the plaintiff's car. The plaintiff claimed the accident caused her to develop rotator cuff tendonitis . The defendant presented evidence showing the minimal nature of the impact and that the plaintiff did not make complaints about the alleged shoulder injury until almost a month after the accident. The plaintiff asked the jury to award her $25-30,000 at the trial. The jury returned a verdict for the defendant.  
Last Demand:    $10,000
Verdict:    Verdict for Defendant

Related Practice Areas


Rear End Auto Accident - Diskectomy, Fusion
Style of Case: Richard D. Ford v. Terry Grizzle
Client:    Terry Grizzle
Trial End Date:   10/11/2007
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit Court, Madison County
Type of Case:    Rear End Auto Accident - Diskectomy, Fusion
Judge:    The Honorable Andreas Matoesian
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Michael J. Bedesky
Jury Verdict
Plaintiff was rear-ended on Main Street near the Edwardsville Courthouse. He eventually underwent a diskectomy and fusion and incurred in excess of $70,000 in medical bills. Plaintiff was treated by chiropractors, pain management specialists and neurosurgeons in Illinois, Missouri and Florida. Plaintiff had a pre-existing herniated disc in his neck and this same disc was removed following the subject accident. Plaintiff had two prior neck injuries before the accident in this case. Plaintiff also retained an expert neurologist, Dr. Robert Margolis, to substantiate his claim that the accident at hand caused the need for the surgery. Photos of the vehicles showed substantial damage to Defendant's vehicle but no visible damage to Plaintiff's vehicle.  
Last Demand:    None
Verdict:    The jury returned a defense verdict.

Related Practice Areas


Dram Shop; Rear End Auto Accident; Fractures
Style of Case: James Snider and Linda Snider v. Mega Leasing Corp., d/b/a Pop’s Saloon
Client:    Mega Leasing Corp.
Trial End Date:   10/9/2007
Court:    20th Judicial Circuit, St. Clair, Illinois
Type of Case:    Dram Shop; Rear End Auto Accident; Fractures
Judge:    The Honorable Lloyd Cueto
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  James L. Hodges
Jury Verdict
On January 24, 2005 Mr. Dino Murabito went to a party at the Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church in St. Louis, Missouri where he consumed 12-14 beers. He then drove to Pop's in Sauget, Illinois where he had a Jack Daniels and Coke. When he realized he was tired he decided to drive home, which put him westbound on Interstate 55/70. The plaintiff's were passengers in a vehicle heading west on Interstate 55/70, when they were rear-ended by Dino Muabito. Mr. Murabito's BAC was .148 following the accident. James Snider suffered four fractured ribs and a sprained wrist with medical bills totaling $25,000.00. Linda Snider suffered a fractured pelvis with medical bills totaling $125,000.00. Defendant Mega Leasing, Corp., established that the one beverage consumed at Pop's did not cause Mr. Murabito's intoxication and therefore was not a cause of the plaintiffs' injuries.  
Last Demand:    James Snider: $56,302.45; Linda Snider: $56,302.45
Verdict:    Defense verdict (jury deliberated for 30 minutes)

Related Practice Areas


Wrongful Death; Emergency Medical Services
Style of Case: Paula Edgar, as the Executrix of the Estate of Paul Worthen, Deceased v. Medstar Ambulance, Inc.
Client:    Medstar Ambulance Inc.
Trial End Date:   9/20/2007
Court:    3rd Judicial Circuit Court, Madison County
Type of Case:    Wrongful Death; Emergency Medical Services
Judge:    The Honorable Andy Matoesian
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Stephen C. Mudge
Jury Verdict
The plaintiff's representative sued Medstar Ambulance Company for allegedly causing the death of Paul Worthen. The defendant denied any liability and denied plaintiff was damaged to the extent claimed. Keith Short of Goldenberg, Heller, Short & Antognoli was plaintiff's counsel.  
Last Demand:    $500,000
Verdict:    $20,000 after setoffs

Related Practice Areas


Auto-Bicycle Crash; Minor; Fractured Knee Cap
Style of Case: Ruth Watkins, Jr. by and through Mother and Next Friend Judy Watkins and Judy Watkins v. Cynthia Spalding
Client:    Cynthia Spalding
Trial End Date:   9/19/2007
Court:    3d Judicial Circuit Court, Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Auto - Bicycle Injury; Minor Plaintiff; Fractured Knee Cap
Judge:    The Honorable Barbara Crowder
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Martin K. Morrissey
Jury Verdict
Fourteen year old plaintiff claimed defendant operated her van negligently and struck him whe he was on his bicycle in the crosswalk fracturing his kneecap. Defendant argued plaintiff caused the accident by entering the street when it was unsafe. Medcial specials totaled $70,000.00. No offer. Plaintiff asked the jury for an award of $250,000.00. Defendant verdict.  
Last Demand:    None
Verdict:    Defense Verdict

Related Practice Areas


Rear End Auto Accident; Neck; Fibromyalgia
Style of Case: Emma Christensen v. Stacey L. Green
Client:    Stacey L. Green
Trial End Date:   9/12/2007
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit Court, Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Rear End Auto Accident; Neck Pain; Fibromyalgia
Judge:    The Honorable Nicholas G. Byron
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Dominique N. Seymoure
Jury Verdict
On January 18, 2002 the plaintiff was stopped in front of the Alton High School on College Avenue in Alton, Illinois. The defendant was traveling on College Avenue when the car in front of her swerved and drove around the plaintiff's stopped vehicle. The defendant was unable to stop before hitting the rear of the plaintiff's vehicle. In addition to claiming an injury to her neck, the plaintiff claimed the automobile accident caused or contributed to her subsequent diagnosis of fibromyalgia. The defendant presented medical testimony and established the plaintiff had prior problems and complaints similar to those she made following the automobile accident. The defendant argued the fibromyalgia was pre-existing and was not aggravated by the automobile accident. The plaintiff asked the jury to award her in excess of $500,000 at the trial. The jury returned a verdict for the plaintiff in the amount of $35,000.  
Last Demand:    $99,999.99
Verdict:    $35,000.

Related Practice Areas


Personal Injury - Auto; Contributory Negligence
Style of Case: Adline G. Young v. Jared J. Whitaker
Client:    Jared J. Whitaker
Trial End Date:   6/21/2007
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit Court, Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Personal Injury - Auto; Contributory Negligence
Judge:    The Honorable Nicholas G. Byron
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Michael C. Hobin
Jury Verdict
Plaintiff alleged personal injuries in a 3-car automobile accident on April 1, 2003 on Route 40 near Troy. Defendant was the driver of the rear vehicle. Plaintiff and defendant claimed each other were liable for the collision. During trial, plaintiff presented evidence of damages by way of testimony from a treating physician and plaintiff herself. Defendant did not utilize an IME. As to liability, both parties testified the other was at fault and defendant called upon the driver of the third vehicle involved in the accident to testify as to what she saw and heard. During closing argument, plaintiff's counsel suggested an award of $75,000. After deliberating for approximately 2 hours, the jury found plaintiff's damages to be $500 and reduced the award by 50%, finding liability to be 50/50.  
Last Demand:    $20,000
Verdict:    $250

Related Practice Areas


Intersection Collision; Bulging Cervical Disc
Style of Case: Linda Strohl v. Tyler Munie
Client:    Tyler Munie
Trial End Date:   6/19/2007
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit Court, Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Personal Injury/Auto Accident
Judge:    The Honorable Richard Tognarelli
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Tori L. Cox
Jury Verdict
Plaintiff was driving eastbound on Broadway near its intersection with Poplar in Highland, Illinois. At the same time, Defendant was driving westbound on Broadway near its intersection with Poplar in Highland, Illinois. Plaintiff claimed that, Defendant negligently drove his vehicle by making a left turn onto Poplar into her path against a red light. Defendant denied that he was negligent and that he caused the accident, denied that he turned against a red light and maintained that Plaintiff was contributorily negligent for entering the intersection against a red light.

Plaintiff claimed she suffered a cervical strain and bulging disc in her cervical spine as a result of the car accident. Plaintiff's counsel asked the jury for $11,608.95 for medical expenses, $20,000 for pain and suffering and $2,500 for loss of normal life.  
Last Demand:    $30,000
Verdict:    For Defendant (Jury Deliberated for 10 minutes)

Related Practice Areas


Premises Liability; Trip & Fall;
Style of Case: Cherie D. Sedlacek v. Georgia Carpet Company
Client:    Georgia Carpet Company
Trial End Date:   5/22/2007
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit Court, Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Premises Liability; Trip & Fall;
Judge:    The Honorable Barbara Crowder
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Dominique N. Seymoure
Jury Verdict
Plaintiff claimed she tripped on a table saw in the Defendant's store in Edwardsville, Illinois on June 23, 2001. Plaintiff claimed a permanent injury to her arm that prevented her from having full use of her right arm, thus making her unable to work in her normal employment. Defendant denied a table saw was kept in the carpet store and Defendant established the individual in charge of the store had no knowledge of the alleged fall until the suit was filed. Defendant also denied Plaintiff was injured to the extent claimed and established Plaintiff had pre-existing injuries to her neck and arm that caused similar complaints to those she made following the alleged fall.  
Last Demand:     $17,500
Verdict:    Defense Verdict

Related Practice Areas


Rear End Auto; Directed Liability; Chiropractic
Style of Case: Ellen Fronabarger v. Edith Burns
Client:    Edith Burns
Trial End Date:   5/14/2007
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit Court, Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Rear End Auto; Directed Liability; Chiropractic Treatment
Judge:    The Honorable Nicholas G. Byron
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Dominique N. Seymoure
Jury Verdict
On November 29, 2003, the plaintiff was traveling west on S.A. 35 at its intersection with Illinois Rout 111 in Nameoki, Illinois. The defendant was also traveling west on S.A. 35 directly behind the plaintiff when she failed to stop and hit the rear of the plaintiff's vehicle. At trial, the Court determined the defendant was negligent.

Following the accident, the plaintiff sought treatment with Lawrence Shipley, D.C. and continued treatment for approximately a year following the accident. She incurred chiropractic bills of approximately $10,000. Defendant established the impact was minimal and that Plaintiff returned to her hobby, bowling, after only five weeks despite her claim of needing a year of chiropractic treatment. Defendant argued Plaintiff was not injured to the extent she claimed and that the amount of treatment was excessive. Plaintiff asked the jury to award her $30,000 at the trial. The jury returned a verdict in favor of Plaintiff for $3,141, which represented five weeks of chiropractic treatment and an award for pain and suffering and loss of a normal life.  
Last Demand:    $17,000
Verdict:    Verdict for Plaintiff for $3,141.

Related Practice Areas


Rear End Auto; Admitted Negligence; Lumbar Disc
Style of Case: Betty Eckhardt v. Victoria Mettler & Community Care Systems
Client:    Victoria Mettler & Community Care Systems
Trial End Date:   4/5/2007
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit Court, Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Rear End Auto; Admitted Negligence; Lumbar Disk Rupture
Judge:    The Honorable Barbara Crowder
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  William B. Starnes II
Jury Verdict
Plaintiff claimed permanent exacerbation of pre-existing Parkinson's Disease and ruptured lumbar vertebral disk from a rear-end auto accident. Defendant admitted negligence. Plaintiff incurred medical bills of $9,750.34. The defense presented medical causation evidence and arguments that that the disk did not rupture until well after the motor vehicle accident, and that there is no scientific evidence that a permanent exacerbation of Parkinson"s Disease can be caused by an automobile accident such as the one at issue. Plaintiff's counsel"recommended" a total verdict of $121,000 for past and future medical expenses, pain and suffering and loss of normal life. Plaintiff"s pre-trial settlement demand was $46,500. The jury returned a verdict for $33,750.34.  
Last Demand:    $46,500
Verdict:    $33,750.34 for Plaintiff

Related Practice Areas


Trucking Accident; Lumbar Surgery; Cubital Tunnel
Style of Case: Richard L. Turner & Sandra M. Smith v. Prairie Central Wood Products & Edward Wenger
Client:    Prairie Central Wood Products, & Edward Wenger
Trial End Date:   3/16/2007
Court:    Third Judicial Circuit Court, Madison County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Trucking Accident; Lumbar Surgery; Cubital Tunnel
Judge:    The Honorable Nicholas Byron
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Roy D. Anderson and Dominique N. Seymoure
Jury Verdict
Plaintiffs were northbound on Interstate 55 near mile post 82 when tandem tires from a tractor trailer owned by Mr. Edward Wenger and leased by Prairie Central Wood Products separated from the trailer, crossed the median and struck plaintiffs' car. At trial, opposing counsel asked the jury to award $270,479.22 for Richard Turner for past and future medical treatment and past and future pain and suffering. The plea for Sandra Smith was for $754,302.08 for past and future medical treatment, lost wages/earnings capacity and past and future pain and suffering. Mr. Turner had cubital tunnel surgery. Ms. Smith had lumbar surgery.

Defendants disputed negligence pointing out that an unnamed party to the lawsuit provided the last comprehensive maintenance to the axle assembly, and that defendants exercised reasonable care inspecting and maintaining the trailer. Whether defendants' driver had any prior notice of impending mechanical failure was in dispute at trial. Defendants made causation and nature and extent arguments against both plaintiffs' alleged injuries.

The jury deliberated 10 hours returning a verdict at 11:00 p.m. in favor of Ms. Smith in the amounts of $40,145.42 for past medical expenses and $2,500.00 for past pain and suffering for a total award of $42,645.42.

The jury returned a verdict in favor of Mr. Turner and awarded sums for past medical expenses in the amount of $25,271.31, future medical expenses of $45,598.00 and $2,500.00 for past pain and suffering for a sum total of $73,369.31.

The case settled on Plaintiffs post-trial motion for a new trial for $130,000 ($82,180.03 for Richard Turner; $47,819.97 for Sandra Smith).  
Last Demand:    $125,000 for Richard Turner; $300,000 for Sandra Smith.
Verdict:    For plaintiff Sandra Smith: $42,645.42

For plaintiff Richard Turner: $73,369.31

Related Practice Areas


Rear End Auto Accident; Lumbar Injury
Style of Case: Emma Moore v. Donald Ahern
Client:    Donald Ahern
Trial End Date:   1/25/2007
Court:    Seventh Judicial Circuit Court, Morgan County, Illinois
Type of Case:    Rear End Auto Accident; Lumbar Injury
Judge:    The Honorable Richard T. Mitchell
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Dominique N. Seymoure
Jury Verdict
On January 28, 2002 the plaintiff was riding as a front-seat passenger in a mini-van in the northbound left-turn lane on South Main Street at its intersection with Morton Avenue in Jacksonville, Illinois. The defendant was also traveling in the northbound left-turn lane on South Main Street directly behind the plaintiff's vehicle. While making the turn on a left-turn signal, the plaintiff's vehicle stopped and the defendant was unable to stop before contacting the rear of the plaintiff's vehicle. The plaintiff claimed injuries to her low back, including the discs in her low back. The defendant presented evidence showing the minimal nature of the impact and that the plaintiff had a 20-plus year history of low back problems and complaints. The plaintiff asked the jury to award her in excess of $100,000 at the trial. The jury returned a verdict for the defendant.  
Last Demand:    $50,000
Verdict:    Defense Verdict

Related Practice Areas


2004

Dog Bite/Strict Liability-Animal Control Act
Style of Case: JoJo Becker, a Minor, by and through her Mother and Next Friend, Jody Becker v. George J. Buhr and Dorothy Buhr
Client:    George and Dorothy Buhr
Trial End Date:   3/22/2004
Court:    St. Clair County Circuit Court, Belleville, Illinois
Type of Case:    Dog Bite/Strict Liability-Animal Control Act
Judge:    The Honorable Jan V. Fiss
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  William B. Starnes II
Jury Verdict
Minor Plaintiff claimed defendant's Brittany Spaniel attacked and bit plaintiff on property where plaintiff lived when she was 9 years old in 1996 causing 3 permanent facial lacerations. Plaintiff's Mother claimed she heard scream and saw daughter on ground and dog running back toward defendants house with dog chain in tow. Both claim step-father/ex-husband picked plaintiff up off the ground. Defendants claimed dog was still on his chain on their property when they arrived home to find message on answering machine that their dog had been involved in a dog bite.

Step-Father/ex-husband testified he heard the scream and proceeded toward it. When he first saw minor plaintiff 15 seconds later, she was 50-75 feet away from and running away from defendant's property line. Defendant's dog was in his usual area where he was usually chained although the witness did not recall if he saw him chained. The minor plaintiff confided with him days after the incident that it occurred in the dog's territory.  
Last Demand:    $100,000.00
Verdict:    Defense Verdict (jury deliberated five hours)

Related Practice Areas


Fire Loss to Hotel; Negligent Security Services
Style of Case: Commercial Union Insurance Company v. Yale Enforcement Services, Inc.
Client:    Yale Enforcement Services, Inc.
Trial End Date:   1/21/2003
Court:    United States District Court for the Southern District of Illinois
Type of Case:    Fire Loss to Hotel; Negligent Security Services
Judge:    The Honorable Michael J. Reagan
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  William B. Starnes II
Jury Verdict
Plaintiff insured Car One Partners which hired Murthy Construction Company to act as general contractor for construction of a Ramada inn in Troy, Illinois. The defendant security company was hired to provide security on the site during hours the construction trades were generally off site. A fire occurred in the early morning hours of October 26, 1997 resulting in the complete destruction of the partially completed building. Plaintiff reimbursed the owner for $1,292,483.25 and sought indemnification from defendant, alleging that defendant failed to perform security services in a workmanlike manner and failed to promptly respond to the fire.

Defendant maintained that it provided appropriate security services at the site in light of what was known to defendant, and that its actions were not a proximate cause of the loss. Defendant offered evidence that the cause of the fire was more likely than not arson, and that the fire was extremely rapid. Defendant also claimed that plaintiff failed to retain and pay for an adequate level of security.  
Last Demand:    $700,000
Verdict:    Defense Verdict (Jury found plaintiff's subrogee's negligence was 75% the proximate cause of the loss).

Related Practice Areas


Premises Liability; Paintball Eye Injury; Vision Loss
Style of Case: Rick Jones v. Wildcat Paintball Park, Inc.
Client:    Wildcat Paintball Park, Inc.
Trial End Date:   4/24/2001
Court:    Madison County, Edwardsville, Illinois
Type of Case:    Premises Liability; Paintball Eye Injury; Vision Loss
Judge:    The Honorable Daniel Stack
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Martin K. Morrissey
Jury Verdict
After a seven-day trial the Madison County jury returned a not guilty verdict for the defendant. Plaintiff had claimed the Paintball Park employees had negligently invited plaintiff to leave the safe staging area and walk to another location near a playing field, where plaintiff was then struck in the eye by a stray paintball from the game field. Plaintiff claimed significant injury, multiple surgeries, traumatically caused glaucoma and loss of vision in the eye. Martin K. Morrissey was the attorney defending this case.  
Last Demand:    Pretrial - $300,000
At Trial - $950,000 before closing
$4 million requested from jury in closing argument.
Last Offer: $75,000
Verdict:    Defendants verdict

Related Practice Areas


Elevator Failure; Contribution; 23 Plaintiffs Injured
Style of Case: Gordan Philbrick, et al., vs. Central Illinois Public Service Co. and Dover Elevator Co.
Client:    Dover Elevator Co.
Trial End Date:   11/3/2000
Court:    Madison County, Edwardsville, Illinois
Type of Case:    Elevator Failure; Contribution; 23 Plaintiffs Injured
Judge:    The Honorable Nicholas G. Byron
Reed Armstrong Lawyer who tried the case:  Stephen C. Mudge
Jury Verdict
Gordon Philbrick and 22 other plaintiffs filed a lawsuit against Central Illinois Public Service Company who owned and operated a power plant in Effingham, Illinois, and Dover Elevator Company, our client, who had originally installed an elevator at the power plant. Twenty-three separate plaintiffs were injured when the elevator descended from the 13th floor. The defendants collectively entered into a settlement of approximately 49 million dollars ($49,000,000.00). The defendants then tried a contribution claim against each other in order to have the jury allocate what, if any, liability each party shared. Central Illinois Power Company maintained that all or nearly all the liability lay with Dover Elevator Company. Dover Elevator Company took the position that most of the liability laid with Central Illinois Power Company. After a 2 ½ week trial the jury reached a verdict allocating 95 percent of the fault against Central Illinois Power Company and only 5 percent of the fault against Dover Elevator Company. This appears to be the largest contribution jury trial in Madison County to date.  
Last Demand:    Central Illinois Public Service Company demanded that Dover Elevator pay the entire amount of the pre-trial settlement with the plaintiffs.
Central Illinois Public Service Company was never reasonable in their demand.
Verdict:    The jury allocated only 5 percent of the total fault to Dover Elevator Company and 95 percent of the fault to Central Illinois Public Service Company.

Related Practice Areas


Reed, Armstrong, Mudge & Morrissey, P.C.
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