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  1. #1
    BEB is offline Banned
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    Question Doctor sues girl, 11, over inline-skating collision

    Checked the url twice to make sure it wasn't from TheOnion.

    I know it's never YOUR fault, it's always SOMEONE ELSE'S fault.

    And still...

    Worth the read for comedy value. BTW, update after this article - Dr Moron lost his case.


    Doctor sues girl, 11, over inline-skating collision
    Says her negligence caused injuries in Chester Twp.

    Thursday, March 1, 2007

    A bicycling doctor has sued his then-11-year-old inline-skating neighbor for pain and suffering after they collided on their Chester Township street in 2003.

    Their trial is under way in Morristown this week.

    Lauren Ellis was inline-skating down her street on a fall afternoon when she collided with an adult neighbor, a prominent fertility doctor, who was bicycling.

    Dr. Alexander Dlugi, now 54, sued the child, claiming she was negligent and caused the collision by reacting unreasonably when he approached her from behind on Sugar Maple Row, shouted "watch out" and rang his bicycle bell.

    This week, the seven-member jury in the civil trial pitting the endocrinologist against Ellis, now a 15-year-old freshman at West Morris-Mendham High School, heard testimony from the teenager and Dlugi, and opinions from an accident-reconstruction specialist.

    The accident expert said on Wednesday Dlugi could have avoided the collision by simply riding around the skater.

    Doctor's case

    Dlugi was an owner of the Bedminster-based Center for Reproductive Endocrinology at the time of the accident, and remains a fertility specialist and part-owner of the center. He broke his collarbone when he tumbled from his bike. His attorney, Thomas Jardim, said the doctor's injury did not heal properly or quickly, so he underwent surgery in February 2004, and missed a significant amount of work and income.

    The doctor has difficulty sleeping well, has lost mobility in his right shoulder and enjoyment of sports he used to excel at, including biking, swimming and tennis, Jardim said.

    Ellis was bruised when the collision knocked her to the ground, but her parents, Jon and Janet Ellis, did not file a counter-suit.

    "It may seem like an odd thing," Jardim said, of the lawsuit against the child. "But people are responsible for their actions." He said the law recognizes that minors over the age of 7 are presumed responsible for their actions, as adults are.

    A defense witness

    For Wednesday's testimony from John Desch, the president of an accident-reconstruction firm based in Riverdale, diagrams, photographs, an easel and ruler were used for an analysis of the encounter between the exercising neighbors on Oct. 19, 2003. Desch, who was called as a witness by Ellis' attorney, Joe Accardi, concluded that the girl did not do anything wrong, under the circumstances.

    The girl was skating, generally on the right side of Sugar Maple Row, and Dlugi had passed her once on his first bicycle loop around the neighborhood. Ellis stopped skating and stepped to the curb when she noticed two approaching vehicles. She stepped back into the road -- with Dlugi a distance behind her on his bicycle -- and resumed skating. Then Dlugi decided to overtake and pass the girl on the road, Desch said.

    Wrong move to left

    Dlugi, who was traveling at no more than 8 mph, rang his bell and called out as he neared her. Hearing the noises, the girl turned around to see Dlugi waving at her and drawing near, and she tried to get out of his way but actually moved into his path and they collided, Desch explained.

    "She's startled by the presence of the bicyclist. She takes evasive action to avoid an impending collision and moved further to the left," Desch said. "I don't find any fault with her actions at all."

    He opined further that Dlugi should have fully braked, or maintained better control of his bicycle, and could have avoided the entanglement with the skater by riding around her in silence.

    Jardim, the doctor's lawyer, sought to discredit Desch's opinions by noting he never investigated a collision between a bicyclist and a skater, and misidentified on his diagram the actual point of their crash. But Desch stuck fast to his opinion that the girl, ahead of the doctor on the same side of the road, had more rights than Dlugi did to her position on the street.

    The trial before Superior Court Judge W. Hunt Dumont resumes today with testimony from medical doctors. Closing arguments are set for Monday.

  2. #2
    KaiGywer's Avatar
    KaiGywer is online now *insert witty remark here*
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    What a moron. Like the article said, he could have biked around the kid and avoided the whole accident. He hit her from the back, so her family should have sued him instead...
    Alpha Phi Sigma Alum - Alpha Delta Chapter

  3. #3
    Piggybank Cop's Avatar
    Piggybank Cop is offline Nobody important.
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    Looks like he rear ended her; his fault.
    We are the thin blue line
    between you
    and all the money in the world.

    And no you can't have any.



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