Rucker v. Knight Trucking
Brain-injured plaintiff awarded $250,000 in admitted liability case
Facts: HCF’s clients were Wilhite Trucking and its driver, Willie Harper. Mr. Harper was driving a tractor trailer on I-285 in Atlanta when he changed lanes and struck the driver’s rear side of Plaintiff’s vehicle. Plaintiff’s vehicle rotated clockwise and perpendicular to the tractor and was pushed down the interstate. Plaintiff’s vehicle ultimately came to rest on the side of the interstate. Defendants’ negligence was admitted.
Plaintiff was diagnosed with traumatic brain injury by numerous medical providers including neurologists at Johns Hopkins and Shepard Center. Despite an absence of pre-accident evidence of head trauma or injury, the primary defense was that Plaintiff showed signs of personality disorder – consistent with her post-accident symptomology – prior to the accident. This evidence was elicited through former employers and co-workers.
Alleged injury/damages: Traumatic brain injury.
Last offer/Last demand: Plaintiff demanded client’s $1 million liability policy limits. Defendants offered $150,000.
Result: $250,000 verdict
Court: State Court of Clayton County, Georgia
Attorneys: Richie Foster and Mike Crawford for defendants; Bill Stone and David Boone for plaintiff