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Punitive damages claim allowed in car accident involving alcohol
Publisher & Editor-in-Chief A sharply divided Virginia Supreme Court has ruled, 4-3, that a trial judge erred in striking a punitive damages claim against a speeding motorist who had two prior DUI convictions, who drove with a .32 blood alcohol content and who fled the scene of an accident he caused. The case is…
Henry J. Schrieberg
Retired Richmond General District Judge Henry J. Schrieberg died on Oct. 28 from injuries he received in a September auto accident. He was 90. The judge survived a spectacular two-car crash after he lost control of his Lincoln and struck an SUV on the Powhite Parkway in Richmond. After a period in intensive care,…
Drunken driver rear ends police officer in Henrico – $95,000 Arbitration Award
A Henrico County police officer was struck in the rear by a moped that had been rear-ended by a drunken driver. The defendants blood alcohol content was 0.27 percent. The officer has had consistent complaints of balance problems since the accident. An arbitrator awarded $55,000 for compensatory damages and $40,000 in punitive damages. Allstates limits…
Drunken passenger settles despite contrib claim
Plaintiff was a passenger in a vehicle operated by the defendant in the early morning hours. Defendant had a blood alcohol content of 0.24 percent. Plaintiff had a BAC of 0.22 percent. Defendant contended that plaintiff grabbed the steering wheel and was “horsing around,” causing the vehicle to go off the roadway, and was therefore…
Coverage issues, posthumous beneficiary complicate settlement – $230,000 Settlement
In this wrongful death case, the sole statutory beneficiary was a posthumous child born five months after the accident. Plaintiffs decedent was killed instantly in a head-on collision while operating a delivery van in the westbound lane of Interstate 64 at 3:00 a.m. on November 20, 2006. The defendant driver, who also died in the…
Negligence – Auto Accident
Type of Action – Auto accident Type of Injuries – Left ankle sprain, nerve entrapment injury to left foot, aggravation of pre-existing degenerative conditions in left knee and lower back Name of Case – Elliott v. Beament Court/Case No. – Goochland County Circuit Court, L96-43 Judge or Jury – Jury Name of Judge -…
Negligence – Auto Accident – Drunken Driving – Punitives
Type of Action – Drunken Driving – Punitive Damages – Negligent Hiring Type of Injuries – Knee cartilage injury Name of Case – Messer v. East, Alumni Association of the University of Virginia and Interim Personnel of Central Virginia, Inc. Court/Case No. – Circuit Court of the City of Charlottesville; CL99-81 Judge or Jury…
Repairman killed in fiery head-on collision with drunk driver – $6,350,000 Verdict
The decedent was driving a flatbed truck loaded with a forklift at 12:30 p.m. when the defendant tried to cross a double solid yellow line and crashed head-on into the decedents truck. The truck then exploded into flames. The decedent was able to extricate himself from the truck, but not before he suffered substantial burns….
Negligence – Auto Accident- DUI – Punitives
Type of Action – Auto Accident – Punitive Damages Awarded for D.U.I. Type of Injuries – cervical and lumbar strain, bruises, contusions, sternal costal chondritis Name of Case – Chappell v. Roan Court/Case No. – Richmond Circuit Court; LC-903-4 Judge or Jury – Jury Name of Judge – Hon. Randall G. Johnson Special Damages…
Insurance – UM Coverage – Drunken Pedestrian Lying On Highway
Where plaintiff was injured when she swerved to avoid a pedestrian who was under the influence of alcohol and was lying drunk in the highway, her damages are not covered by her own policy’s uninsured motorist provisions. The insured argues that the pedestrian’s body impeded traffic on route 3, and that except for the…

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