On January 28, 2017, plaintiff was T-boned by a Lafayette police officer who pulled out of the parking lot at Our Lady of Fatima Church on Johnston Street in Lafayette, crashing into the side of plaintiff’s pickup truck. Prior to trial, the parties stipulated that the defendant police officer was the sole legal cause of the subject collision and that he was in the course and scope of his employment with Lafayette City-Parish Consolidated Government at the time of the collision.
As the result of the collision, the 29-year-old plaintiff suffered injuries to his cervical and lumbar spine including annular fissures at C4-5 and C5-6, a central disc protrusion at C6-7, disc bulging at L3-4 and L4-5, as well as a disc protrusion and fissure at L5-S1. Plaintiff’s pre-trial treatment included three (3) rounds of cervical steroid injections and two (2) rounds of lumbar injections. In 2019, plaintiff’s treating spine surgeon recommended that plaintiff undergo total disc replacement at C6-C7 and an anterior lumbar interbody fusion at L5-S1.
Plaintiff, a father of six, continued to work through his pain following the collision so that he could support his family. At trial, the defense attempted to downplay plaintiff’s injuries using job descriptions which indicated he was required to perform heavy lifting at work and testimony from his supervisors confirming those job descriptions. Plaintiff testified the job descriptions did not accurately reflect the actual work he was required to perform at those jobs and on cross-examination, plaintiff’s supervisors were forced to admit that they had never actually observed him perform any heavy lifting after the accident.
The defense also argued that plaintiff’s continued symptoms at the time of trial were not related to the January 2017 collision, but were caused by a February 2022 accident in which plaintiff flipped his truck into a ditch when an oncoming driver came into his lane and ran him off the road. Plaintiff’s treating doctors testified that because there were no new symptoms or MRI findings following the 2022 rollover accident, they still related plaintiff’s injuries to the 2017 collision.
Defendants’ top offer prior to trial was $163,983.90.
The case was tried as a bench trial on January 10 and 11, 2023 and the Court awarded plaintiff 100% of his past medical expenses of $40,271.10 and 100% of his future medical expenses of $1,411,487.75, including four epidural steroid injections and pain medication for the next 20 years, the recommended cervical and lumbar surgeries, as well as future adjacent segment surgeries. In addition, the Court awarded $575,000.00 in general damages for a total award of over $2,000,000.00.
C.D. v. Lafayette City-Parish Consolidated Government, et al. Docket No. 2017-7383 G (15th JDC, Lafayette Parish, 2/17/23).
Robert B. Brahan, Jr. of Broussard, David & Moroux represented the plaintiff.
The attorneys at Broussard, David & Moroux 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 because of the fault of another, contact the attorneys at Broussard, David & Moroux to discuss your legal rights at (337) 233-2323 (local) or (888) 337-2323 (toll-free).