Matthew J. Vitucci obtained a defense verdict in a case involving a collision between defendant’s vehicle and the vehicle in which plaintiff, a sitting Supreme Court Justice, was a passenger, which vehicle was operated by her husband. Plaintiff’s husband/third-party defendant made contact with defendant’s vehicle while turning left in front of him, traveling from Gerard Avenue onto 138th Street in the Bronx. The matter was tried before Justice Edward Ritholtz in Supreme Court, Queens County.
Plaintiff’s liability expert, Robert Genna, P.E., of the Suffolk County Crime Lab testified that defendant saw third-party defendant turn in front of him for five seconds before the impact, translating to his having 183 feet of stopping distance, and that a mere tap on the brakes would have avoided impact. Defense expert witness testified that the left turn by third-party defendant gave defendant an insufficient time to activate his brakes.
The plaintiff claimed serious injuries, including a comminuted right tibia fracture, requiring surgical implantation of a bone stimulator and seven weeks of inpatient treatment, as well as a permanent diagnosis of deep vein thrombosis. The jury returned a verdict stating that defendant was not negligent in any percentage, thus wholly non-suiting the plaintiff.