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Driver backed into woman, hurting her ankle – $248,630 Verdict

Virginia Lawyers Weekly//July 14, 2019

Driver backed into woman, hurting her ankle – $248,630 Verdict

Virginia Lawyers Weekly//July 14, 2019//

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The case arose from injuries sustained in a low-speed collision in a restaurant parking lot on April 16, 2013. The plaintiff, who had an unrelated right knee injury scheduled for surgery several weeks later, was exiting the passenger side of a pickup truck to enter the restaurant. The defendant was backing her own vehicle out of a parking space, and backed into the door of the pickup truck, closing it on the plaintiff’s ankle. The defendant realized the impact and pulled forward. The plaintiff’s ankle was not fractured or bleeding, but was painful. She sought emergency treatment and was discharged with sprain/strain diagnoses. She underwent unrelated knee surgery thereafter and due to other, unrelated health conditions, did not seek treatment dedicated to the right ankle until March 2015. She testified that the ankle continued to be painful and unstable throughout this two-year time period. Her treating physician, Dr. Zelen, diagnosed an attenuated ATFL, and performed a recommended surgery thereafter in which he discovered a small tear in the peroneal tendon. Plaintiff’s evidence was that despite the surgery and extensive physical therapy, she had permanent limitations and pain that resulted in her voluntary retirement in 2018, about 1.5 years earlier than her planned retirement.


Type of action: Personal injury

Injuries alleged: Plaintiff claimed injuries to her right ankle involving attenuated (stretched) anterior talofibular ligament, and peroneal tendon tear.

Name of case: Keith v. Mountcastle

Court: Salem Circuit Court

Case no.: CL15-133

Tried before: Judge

Name of judge: Judge David Carson

Date resolved: April 26, 2019

Special damages: $77,168 past medical expenses; $85,570 lost earnings; $23,020 lost retirement pay

Verdict or settlement: Verdict

Amount: $248,630

Attorney for plaintiff: Devon Munro, Roanoke

Attorney for defendant: Mark Cathey, Roanoke

Plaintiff’s experts: Charles Zelen, DPM; George Barrett, MBA, MSRC

Defendant’s experts: William Andrews Jr., MD; Deborah Frost, MS, CRC, LPC, QRP; C. Zachary Meyers, CPA, CVA

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