Madison County Circuit Judge William Mudge will hold a hearing at 9 a.m. today in a case against Norfolk Southern Railway filed by a man who claims a train hit him while he lay unconscious on railroad tracks near Staunton in 2007.

The case is set for trial on Feb. 6, and the pre-trial conference is scheduled Feb. 2.

Defendants Norfolk Southern Railway Company, Paul Holden and Travis Atchison answered the complaint with affirmative defenses more than a year ago on Jan. 18, 2011. According to the case file, the plaintiff has not filed a response to the defendants' affirmative defenses.

The hearing seeks to settle admission of defendants' affirmative defenses.

Plaintiff John Whitt, who had been attending the Staunton Homecoming, claims he was attacked and left unconscious on the railroad tracks.

He claims that Norfolk Southern's train crew, Paul Holden and Travis Atchison, saw him on the tracks but failed to stop for help.

His suit seeks damages in excess of $50,000.

The railroad claims that Whitt was intoxicated as he was trespassing on its crossing and that it is not liable for his injuries.

Eric Carlson from the firm Byron, Carlson, Petri & Kalb is among the plaintiff's counsel.

Michael Bedesky from Reed, Armstrong, Gorman, Mudge and Morrissey represents the defense.

The case is Madison case number 09-L-668

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Reed, Armstrong, Mudge & Morrissey

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