$31,000,000.00 Verdict | Products Liability
In 2001, Jesse Branham was a back seat passenger in a 1987 Ford Bronco II. Jesse was ejected from the vehicle and suffered a closed head injury. During a three week trial, the firm presented evidence that the Bronco II rolled over due to the vehicleís inherent instability caused by its high center of gravity and narrow track width. After a three week trial, the jury awarded Jesse Branham 16 million dollars in actual damages and 15 million dollars in punitive damages. On appeal, the South Carolina Supreme Court reversed and remanded the case holding for the first time that the risk utility test is the exclusive test in design defect cases. The case will be retried in 2011.
$14,630,842.57 Verdict | Medical Malpractice
The firm, along with attorneys Terry Finger and Andrew Scherffius, represented Gayle and Thomas Taylor in an action for medical malpractice and unfair trade practices against Rajko D. Medenica, M.D. and his laboratory, Cancer Immuno-Biology Laboratory, Inc for injuries Mrs. Taylor sustained as a result of her chemotherapy treatment. The firm proved Dr. Medenica violated the standard of care in prescribing Mitomycin-C, a drug with potentially fatal side effects, as part of Mrs. Taylorís chemotherapy regime and for billing the Taylors for laboratory tests that were not warranted. Following a multi-week jury trial, the Taylorís received a verdict of $14,630,842.57. The verdict was sustained on appeal.
$12,500,000.00 Verdict | Railroad Litigation
On the morning of June 3, 2001, Gregory Williams was killed at a railroad grade crossing in Swansea, South Carolina. Mr. Williams was on his way to work. He was struck by a piece of CSX track equipment. In a multi week trial, the firm proved Mr. Williams stopped at a stop sign for the crossing and looked both ways before entering the crossing but that his view was obstructed by overgrown vegetation in CSXís right-of-way. The jury awarded Mr. Williamsí mother $4,500,000.00 in actual damages and $7,500,000.00 in punitive damages. The trial judge reduced the punitive damages award to $4,500,000.00. In an unpublished opinion, the South Carolina Supreme Court affirmed the juryís actual damages award but reversed and remanded the punitive damages award for a new trial. The parties settled the punitive damages claim before the second trial.
$9,000,000.00/ $4,250,000.00 Verdict | Defamation
The firm represented the Murphys in a defamation action against Jefferson Pilot Communications and its news director, Donald Feldman, for defamatory remarks made by Donald M. Feldman. The trial judge directed a verdict for Jefferson Pilot Communications at the end of trial finding Donald Feldman was not acting as an agent of Jefferson Pilot Communications at the time he made the defamatory remarks. The jury returned a $9,000,000.00 verdict against Donald Feldman. On appeal, the Court of Appeals held the Murphys presented sufficient evidence of agency to make it an issue to be determined by the jury. In a second trial, the jury returned a verdict of $4,250,000.00 against Jefferson Pilot Communications.
$4,125,000.00 Verdict | Railroad Litigation
On the evening of June 17, 2000, the vehicle in which Susan Webb was a passenger was struck by a CSX train as she and her sister-in-law, Doris Medlin, were returning to her home in Pelzer, South Carolina. Ms. Webb was killed due to injuries she sustained in the accident. PMPED brought suit on behalf of Ms. Webbís estate, alleging the available sight distance at the crossing, based on the train speed, was inadequate due to the overgrown vegetation. After a three-week trial, an Anderson County jury awarded $3.25 million in actual damages and $875,000 in punitive damages. On appeal, the South Carolina Supreme Court reversed the actual and punitive damages verdicts and remanded the case to for retrial. The parties reached a settlement prior to the second trial.
$3,500,000.00 Verdict | Road & Traffic Signal Defects
Ms. Cohen was a passenger in a vehicle traveling on a rural highway in Jasper County at night when the car struck a tree that had fallen across the highway. Ms. Cohen suffered a brain injury in the collision. Employees of the SCDOT were attempting to remove the tree at the time of the collision. The firm proved at trial that the SCDOT was negligent in failing to properly warn motorists of the fallen tree. The jury awarded Ms. Cohen $3,500,000.00 in actual damages.
$3,000,000.00 Verdict | Road & Traffic Signal Defects
On June 12, 2003, Mr. Bishop was travelling north on Highway 301 from Bamberg to Orangeburg, SC during a rain storm. Without warning, he struck a substantial amount of water on the road that caused him to lose control and wreck. His vehicle came to rest upside down in a ditch adjacent to the road. As a result of the wreck, he suffered a brain injury. Through engineering studies, we were able to prove that the SCDOT had failed to properly maintain the road by allowing an inadequate cross-slope that prevented the road from draining properly. After a week-long trial, the jury returned a verdict for $3,000,000.00 in actual damages.
$2,500,000.00 Verdict | Road & Traffic Signal Defects
Tammy Wilson was the passenger in a vehicle that was struck by a train at a railroad grade crossing. Tammy Wilson died in the collision. The firm represented Mrs. Wilsonís children in an action against the South Carolina Highway Department. In a week long trial the firm proved an improperly timed traffic control signal caused Mrs. Wilsonís driver to enter the crossing while a train was approaching. The jury awarded Mrs. Wilsonís children $2,500,000.00.
$2,500,000.00 Verdict | Trucking Accidents
In the early 1980ís James Scott suffered a closed head injury when a multipiece rim explosively separated while he was mounting it on the axle of a trailer. The firm proved the wheel assembly was defective because the rim and ring were not designed to by used together. A jury awarded Mr. Scott $1,250,000.00 in actual damages and $1,250,000.00 in punitive damages. On appeal, the South Carolina Supreme Court sustained the juryís verdict.
$2,375,000.00 Verdict | Products Liability
On Sunday morning, February 7, 2007, nine-year old Miranda Courtney was a back-seat passenger in her parentís 2000 Nissan Xterra. As the Courtney family was on their way to church, the Xterra was struck between the front and rear passenger doors by a GMC pickup. Upon impact, the Xterra caught fire and continued burning. Sitting directly above the fuel tank, Miranda received severe burns to her face, arms, and legs. Miranda sustained no other injuries as a result of the collision. PMPED brought a product liability action on behalf of Miranda alleging that the Xterraís body-mount bracket located about 2.5 inches from the fuel tank could puncture the fuel tank if struck in the side. After a two-week trial, a Florence County jury awarded the Courtneyís $2.375 million in actual damages.
$1,750,000.00 Verdict | Trucking Accidents
Ms. Benton was injured in a collision in Columbia, South Carolina when she was struck by a tractor trailer owned by Cland Transport, Inc. and being operated by one of its employees. Ms. Benton suffered a knee injury which necessitated a knee replacement. Cland Transport, Inc. alleged Ms. Benton was the sole cause of the collision and that her knee replacement was the result of pre-existing conditions. The firm presented evidence that the collision was caused by Cland Transportís driverís inattention resulting from having driven over the hours allowed under the federal motor carrier statute and presented medical testimony relating Ms. Bentonís knee injury to the collision. A jury returned a $1,750,000.00 verdict for Ms. Benton.
$1,500,000.00 Verdict | Railroad Litigation
The firm brought suit against CSX Transportation, Inc. in Hampton County on behalf of Danny Whaley, an injured locomotive engineer. A jury in Hampton County awarded Mr. Whaley $1,000,000.00 following a multi-week trial. On appeal the South Carolina Supreme Court reversed the verdict holding venue was improper in Hampton County. The case was remanded for trial in Greenwood County. On retrial, a Greenwood County jury found damages for Mr. Whaley of $1,500,000.00. http://www.sccourts.org/opinions/HTMLFiles/SC/25935.htm
$750,000.00 Verdict | Products Liability
Cynthia Raino suffered a leg injury in a single vehicle accident in 1988 when a tire on her vehicle separated causing her to lose control of her vehicle. The jury awarded Mrs. Raino $750,000.00 in damages. The South Carolina Supreme Court sustained the juryís verdict.
Confidential Settlement | Medical Malpractice
PMPED represented a 27 year old pregnant female who suffered a permanent hypoxic brain injury as a result of a local hospitalís failure to diagnose and timely treat a collapsed lung. The firm secured a substantial settlement for the plaintiff prior to trial. The terms and amount of the settlement are confidential.