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Jury Verdict Awarded to Off-duty Officer Injured in Collision

Posted on Dec 23, 2009

A man riding his motorcycle was injured when he collided with a vehicle being driven by Frank DeCaro.  The incident occurred at the intersection of Passyunk Avenue and 15th Street in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Christopher Nalls, a police officer who was off-duty at the time, was second behind DeCaro’s vehicle.  The vehicles were stopped on Passyunk waiting for a red light.  DeCaro and the car directly behind him signaled left turns.  Nalls went to pass both vehicles on the right.  However, when the light changed, DeCaro did not turn left.  He drove his vehicle straight and then attempted to turn right into a parking space.  Nalls then struck DeCaro’s vehicle on the passenger’s side.  DeCaro was on his way to work when the collision occurred.

Plaintiff sued DeCaro and his employer for motor vehicle negligence.  His counsel argued that defendant was negligent for signaling left, but instead continued straight on the roadway which caused the accident.

Nalls was taken by ambulance to a local hospital where he was treated for a degloving injury and fractures to both his left and right arms along with fractures to his right hand and right ankle.  He underwent five surgeries and rehabilitation.  Nalls is unable to return to full capacity as an officer as he has limited use of his left arm.

The jury awarded the plaintiff $2,650,000.00.  This amount was reduced to $1,987,500.00 after the jurors found Nalls twenty-five percent negligent.

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