Burks v. Coons

January 2017

Jeanie S. Ismay successfully obtained a defense verdict for her client in a three-day trial before Judge Judith Ensor in the Baltimore County Circuit Court. The plaintiff, a pedestrian, was struck by the defendant, who was driving her vehicle at night on Route 40 in Catonsville. The plaintiff alleged that the defendant driver was negligent in failing to avoid striking and injuring the plaintiff, who was jaywalking. At trial, the plaintiff called a medical doctor who testified to the injuries allegedly sustained as a result of the accident. The defense argued that the most significant injury was a pre-existing injury to the plaintiff’s ankle, a fact not considered by the medical doctor. The retired police officer who investigated the scene testified on behalf of the defendant and provided key testimony that the plaintiff was not crossing in a crosswalk and stepped into oncoming traffic. The jury deliberated for less than an hour before it unanimously decided that the defendant driver was not responsible for the accident and entered a verdict in favor of the defendant, Leder & Hale’s client. The plaintiff did not appeal the jury’s decision. Burks v. Coons, Case No. 03-C-15-000664.