Non-jury trial set after helmet manufacturer found in default in suit alleging defective helmet

By Heather Isringhausen Gvillo | Mar 13, 2019

Madison County Circuit Judge William Mudge scheduled a non-jury, damages only trial in a motorcyclist’s suit alleging he suffered a severe brain injury due to a defective helmet.

The trial has been set for March 28 at 1 p.m.

Default judgment was entered against defendant Daytona Helmets Inc. on Dec. 20 after the defendant failed to file an answer by the Sept. 21 deadline.

Plaintiff Joseph Richards filed a motion for default judgment on Oct. 30, and a hearing was set for Dec. 20. A notice of the hearing and a copy of the motion were mailed to Daytona Helmet, but the defendant failed to appear.


Darr  

Richards filed his complaint on Aug. 17, 2018 against Daytona Helmets Inc., Lee Ann Nicole Wiley, doing business as Freaky Nicky’s Custom Cycle Shop, and Freaky Nicky’s Custom Cycle Shop.

In his complaint, Richards alleges he purchased a motorcycle helmet at Freaky Nicky’s Custom Cycle Shop in Alton that had been manufactured by Daytona Helmets. He claims he was wearing the helmet on Sept. 24, 2016 when he was involved in a motorcycle crash on Broadway in Alton.

Richards alleges he sustained a severe traumatic brain injury due to the defective helmet, but no other life threatening or disabling physical injuries.

Richards alleges Daytona Helmets failed to label the helmet as not suitable for highway use, failed to warn end stage users that the helmet was not safe for highway use and failed to manufacture the helmet to sustain reasonable and expected forces.

The plaintiff alleges Wiley and Freaky Nicky’s Custom Cycle Shop negligently presented and sold the helmet in question by placing DOT approved helmets with those not suitable for roadway use. He also alleges the defendants failed to warn him that the helmet was not suitable for road use.

Richards is represented by Lanny Darr of Darr Law Offices in Alton.

Madison County Circuit Court case number 18-L-1071

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