BRAIN DAMAGE FROM AUTOMOBILE ACCIDENT

A MAN IS AWARDED $15.5 MILLION OVER ACCIDENT
BATON ROUGE ADVOCATE
BY: ADRIAN ANGELETTE
Date: Mar 29, 2003
Start Page: 1.B.X
Section: News

A jury has awarded a Walker man $15.5 million in damages for brain damage and other injuries he suffered when an 18-wheeler rear-ended his pickup.
The jury awarded another $1 million late Thursday to 29 year-old ___________ parents, ______ and _________________, for loss of consortium with their son after the Jan.4, 2000, accident.
“This is a horribly tragic case,” said Locke Meredith, one of the attorney’s for the family, which sued in state District Court in Baton Rouge. “These were devastating injuries. His life as an adult was terminated. He is like a child that will never grow up.”
___________ now has the mental capacity of an 8-year old, Meredith said. He also suffered paralysis of the right side of his body and injuries to the spine, eyes and shoulder and mouth, according to the plaintiffs.
The $15.5 million award covers future medical expenses and care, loss of enjoyment of life, physical disabilities, lost wages and earning capacity, pain and suffering and other damages.
A hearing will be held to determine how much each of the defendants- Mike’s Trucking Co. of Grosse Tete, Star Insurance Co., Nutmeg Insurance Co., and Twin City Fire Insurance Co. – will pay, Meredith said.
The trucking company’s attorney, James Pate of Lafayette, did not return phone calls Friday for comment on whether the defense will appeal.
Before the trial began, Mike’s Trucking accepted complete responsibility for the accident, according to court records. The trial was held solely to determine damages in the case.
There was no testimony during the trial about what cause the accident, but it appears the truck driver, Dwight Daigle, was not paying attention, said Sean Fagan, another of _________ attorneys.
The plaintiffs claim the truck, which was carrying 28 tons of sand, had defective brakes and also contend the driver was speeding.
Daigle was charged with negligent injuring, driving without a license and careless operation.
According to court records, the injuring and careless operation charges were dismissed, and Daigle paid about $160 in fines and court costs for driving without a license.
Fagan said the accident occurred about 9 a.m. on La. 3034 while _________ was heading to his job at DEMCO. ___________ had the left-turn signal light on and was waiting for traffic to clear when the 18-wheeler hit him from behind.
The crash catapulted the pickup into a patch of trees. ________ and a passenger in the pickup, _________________, were injured.
______________ also sued Mike’s Trucking and the insurance companies, suffered multiple injuries in the accident, including brain damage, Meredith said. Meredith said the trial in that case is set for April.

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