Kim H. Townsend recently obtained a favorable verdict for his client, the defendant in a slip and fall case. The plaintiff claimed to have slipped and fell on the exterior steps of a two-family home in Kings County belonging to the defendant. According to the lawsuit, the defendant’s steps were caked in ice and snow, and the stairs were surrounded by a defectively designed handrail, as defined by NYC code.
While the plaintiff sustained a bimalleolar ankle fracture with complications and required 3 surgeries and hardware, as well as an additional surgery for an infection at the wound site, her injury actually occurred in the street. The plaintiff reported a different story than ambulance drivers and admitted to having prior knowledge of personal injury litigation. While not usually admissible, the plaintiffs previous fall-down accident and lawsuit were brought in as evidence by Mr. Townsend.
After 9 minutes of deliberation, the jury allowed the defendant to close the case with a $350,000 fine and a verdict that favored the defense. The plaintiff initially demanded $1,300,000.
Kim H. Townsend and Gallo Vitucci Klar LLP are members of Themis Advocates Group.