Plaintiff's attorney asks jury in car accident trial to 'make it right'

Amelia Flood Mar. 9, 2010, 9:10am

A Madison County jury awarded the plaintiff in a 2006 Glen Carbon rear end accident $5,000 in damages Tuesday after just over 4 hours of deliberations.

In closing arguments, plaintiff's attorney J.R. Stever asked jurors to "make it right" for his client, Joshua Miller.

Miller claims his neck was injured and his bad back was exacerbated when Joseph Mondorf rear-ended him in May 2006 in Glen Carbon.

Mondorf's attorney, John Leskera, countered that Miller wasn't injured in the accident and that he was trying to make Mondorf pay for a pre-existing condition.

The trial opened Monday morning.

During his closing argument, Stever stressed that Miller's alleged injuries had made it hard for him to enjoy his work or playing with his children.

He cited the testimony of two doctors and a chiropractor who testified that Miller's problems were caused by the accident.

He detailed his client's medical bills.

Stever asked jurors to award his client damages of more than $70,000.

"We cannot take away the injury," he said. "We cannot take away the accident. We cannot take away the pain."

Leskera countered by asking jurors to be "reasonable."

He pointed to Miller's statements that he told officers who arrived at the 2006 accident site that he wasn't hurt.

He argued that the accident did not cause Miller's neck spasms and bad back. He argued that the problems were part of a pre-existing condition.

Jurors retired to deliberate shortly before noon Tuesday after being instructed by presiding judge, Madison County Circuit Judge Andy Matoesian.

The jury entered its verdict at 2:55 p.m. Tuesday.

The case is Madison case number 08-L-174.

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