Harrison set to hear plaintiff's plea for third trial in '98 case

Amelia Flood Aug. 24, 2010, 1:00pm


Madison County Associate Judge Clarence Harrison II will hear a plea for a new trial in a more than decade old personal injury suit on Wednesday.

If granted, the trial would be number three in the case's history.

Two previous trials in a case brought by plaintiff Cecil Dial Jr. have ended in verdicts for defendant Bradley Joiner.

Tomorrow's hearing is set for 8:30 a.m.

Dial Jr. is suing Joiner for more than $1 million in damages for injuries he suffered when Joiner's SUV hit the plaintiff as he crossed the street near Edwardsville Middle School.

Dial Jr., who was 12 years old at the time of the accident in 1997, suffered massive head injuries.

He claims Joiner to keep a look out and that he was distracted.

Joiner denies that he was negligent in hitting Dial Jr., claiming the boy walked out in front of his car before he could stop.

The suit's second trial ended in May with a victory for Joiner.

The plaintiff claims repeated personal attacks on his attorneys Roy Dripps and Charles Armbruster by defense counsel Stephen Mudge denied him a fair second trial.

The first trial was in 2004.

After that jury found for Joiner, then-presiding judge, former Madison County Associate Judge Ralph Mendelsohn, threw out the verdict and ordered a new trial.

The appellate court upheld Mendelsohn's decision and sent the case back to Madison for trial number two.

The Edwardsville school district and Dial Jr.'s mother were also parties to the case at one time but were dropped by the time of the suit's second trial.

The case is Madison case number 1998-L-899.

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