Just a week into the new year and Joe Petka has already obtained a defense verdict in a Bucks County jury trial. The case involved a pedestrian vs. vehicle accident, where Joe’s client struck a 23-year-old sanitation worker as he was picking up trash cans. The plaintiff claimed that he was walking along the side of the road when he was struck on the left side and knocked unconscious. The plaintiff alleged post-concussive syndrome and a grade 2 AC joint separation of his left shoulder. As a result of the injuries, the plaintiff missed an entire year of work after the accident. During that period, he had vestibular therapy, cognitive therapy and speech therapy for his head injury as well as physical therapy for his separated shoulder. At the trial, the plaintiff continued to complain of constant headaches and shoulder pain. He also presented a workers’ compensation lien in the amount of $52,000.
For the defense, Joe argued that the accident was caused solely by the negligence of the plaintiff. His client testified that she witnessed the plaintiff walk backward into her lane of travel and into the side of her car. Joe argued that his client’s version of the accident was supported by evidence of a dent on the side of her car and by statements made to the police at the scene of the accident as well as statements made in the plaintiff’s emergency room records. Joe also called the police officer as a witness to highlight additional evidence such as the skid marks and the location of the vehicle after the accident. He argued that this evidence supported the theory that the defendant was driving below the speed limit.
Ultimately, the jury of six men and six women agreed with Joe and found that there was no evidence of negligence.