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$3.4 Million Jury Verdict for Pedestrian Injured When Hit by Tow Truck

On December 16, 2014, a Cook County, Illinois, jury returned a $3.4 million verdict in favor of a pedestrian in a personal injury case against a tow truck company.

The case involved an accident that occurred on August 27, 2011, when a 37-year-old man was struck by a left-turning tow truck while he walked southbound across Montrose Avenue in a marked crosswalk at the intersection of Montrose Avenue and Broadway Street in Chicago. The man was knocked out by the impact and remained unconscious when the paramedics arrived. Brain imaging revealed the collision caused subarachnoid and subdural hematomas and brain contusions. A brain pressure monitor was placed and the man was held in a drug-induced coma for four days. Fortunately, brain surgery was avoided and later the man recovered full use of his arms and legs. He returned to work as a computer analyst five weeks after the injury and has continued working in that capacity, without any work restrictions, ever since.

In the lawsuit, the man claimed subtle brain damage as a result of traumatic brain injury with permanent cognitive losses and personality changes. While the towing company admitted fault, it denied the severity of the man’s residual injuries and argued he made a good recovery. The towing company offered surveillance video into evidence, which was received over objection, and argued this showed the man made a good recovery and he is not injured or damaged to the extent claimed.

After a six-day trial presided over by Cook County Circuit Judge James M. Varga, the unanimous twelve person jury awarded the injured man and his wife a total of $3.4 million in damages, including $1 million in lost future earning capacity and $800,000 in future medical expenses. The towing company’s highest pretrial settlement offer was $900,000 and the pedestrian’s lowest pretrial settlement demand was $3 million.

The lead trial attorney for the injured man and his wife was David E. Rapoport of Rapoport Weisberg & Sims P.C. in Chicago, who said after the verdict: “We are grateful the jury understood an innocent pedestrian was severely injured and suffers from the continuing effects of his traumatic brain injury. It was wrong for the towing company to secretly spy on this man and his family. The surveillance movies appear to have backfired on the towing company.”

Assisting Mr. Rapoport at the trial were Timothy W. Heath of Timothy W. Heath & Associates, Steven J. Morton of Steven J. Morton & Associates, Ltd. and Lindsey A. Seeskin of Rapoport Weisberg & Sims P.C.

Rapoport Weisberg & Sims P.C. is a personal injury law firm based in Chicago, Illinois. The personal injury attorneys at Rapoport Weisberg & Sims P.C. have achieved multimillion-dollar verdicts and settlements for individuals with lawsuits arising from medical malpractice, product liability, semitruck and motor vehicle accidents, workplace injuries and construction accidents in Illinois and Wisconsin. Rapoport Weisberg & Sims P.C.’s premier aviation negligence lawyers represent victims of commercial and general aviation disasters nationwide.

If you feel you may be in need of legal services, personally email an attorney from Rapoport Weisberg & Sims P.C. for a free case evaluation or telephone our Chicago office toll free at 877-216-4213.