Calcasieu Parish jury awards $5.4MM to petroleum engineer who has neck and back surgery

LAKE CHARLES, LA – November 16, 2017

A Calcasieu Parish jury awarded $5,451,395.00 to a Venezuelan native who injured his neck and back when his Hummer SUV hit a cow on a rural state highway.

On the night of May 28, 2014, the plaintiff was driving on Louisiana Highway 27, headed home after a hitch working offshore as a petroleum engineer. Multiple cows appeared in the road as he was passing another vehicle on a dark and unlit stretch of Highway 27 which was adjacent to property owned by defendant Sweet Lake Land & Oil Company, LLC.

The cows that caused the collision were owned by Sweet Lake. They had escaped from the Sweet Lake property through an open gates. Sweet Lake did not know who left the gates open. Still, Sweet Lake alleged that plaintiff was speeding and also tried to blame a tenant farmer. The jury assigned 100% fault  to Sweet Lake.

The plaintiff treated consistently until his orthopedic spine surgeon recommended and performed the following surgeries in the summer of 2016: anterior cervical discectomy and fusion at C5-6 and anterior lumbar interbody fusion at L5-S1. Plaintiff continued to struggle with chronic pain, limitations, and depression. His past medical bills awarded trial totaled $255,982.

Plaintiff’s doctors testified that his injuries progressed and became disabling in May of 2016. The jury agreed and awarded $314,854 in past lost earnings and benefits and $3,106,561 in future lost earning capacity, as well as over $1.1MM in general damages.

Counsel: Blake R. David (lead counsel), Robert B. Brahan, Jr. of Broussard & David, LLC

Experts: Bob Kingsbury, cattle management, fencing (Tioga, Texas); Dr. Charles Bettinger, economist (Lake Charles), Jeff Peterson, voc rehab and life care (Lake Charles).

The attorneys at Broussard & David have the knowledge and experience necessary to handle cases of this nature and will fight to obtain fair compensation for your injuries. If you or a loved one has suffered harm as a result of another’s negligence, contact the attorneys at Broussard & David to discuss your legal rights at (337) 233-2323 (local) or (888) 337-2323 (toll-free).

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