Lashly & Baer’s Stephen Beimdiek obtains defense verdict for trucking client

POSTED JUNE 14, 2024

Lashly & Baer, P.C. (St. Louis, MO)

Stephen Beimdiek obtains defense verdict for trucking client

In a multi-vehicle transportation case tried in the U.S. District Court Eastern District of Missouri, where the plaintiff last made a settlement demand of $4.1M and asked the jury for an award of $6M to $9M during closing arguments, Stephen L. Beimdiek of Lashly & Baer, P.C. in St. Louis, Missouri obtained a verdict where the plaintiff was found to be 92% at fault and the defendant driver 8% at fault, resulting in a net verdict to plaintiff after a set-off of $10,000.

The defendant had last offered $2.25M to settle prior to trial.

A gooseneck trailer the plaintiff was towing was rear-ended by the defendant Driver, causing the tanker the Defendant was hauling to jackknife and the plaintiff’s truck to separate from the trailer and run off into the median. Another truck that was behind the defendant’s truck hit the defendant’s jackknifed tanker, lost control and ran off into the median, where it hit the plaintiff’s truck.

The driver of that truck was granted summary judgment by the Court after it concluded that there was nothing he could do/nowhere to go/the accident would not have happened but for the defendant driver rear-ending plaintiff’s trailer and jackknifing.

The plaintiff sustained extensive and significant injuries, including a traumatic brain injury, a broken neck, a broken back, a broken pelvis, both legs broken and a broken ankle.

The plaintiff argued that the defendant was a distracted driver and should have seen and avoided the Plaintiff’s tractor/trailer before hitting it, as seen in the Dashcam video from the defendant’s truck.

The plaintiff’s trailer had a flat tire, and he was trying to get to the next exit off the highway when he was hit. The plaintiff testified that he was driving 40 mph on the highway with his flashers on.

Defendant’s expert opined that this was a looming case, where the plaintiff was traveling approximately 22 mph to 25 mph down the highway and that by the time the defendant driver appreciated how slowly the plaintiff was moving, there was nothing he could do to avoid the accident and that the plaintiff should not have been on the highway given the condition of his trailer.



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