Plaintiff in car wreck trial lands victory, but leaves empty handed

David Yates Nov. 25, 2008, 4:00am

Joel Sprott

Last year, Nathaniel Stephens sued Ashleigh Petry over a rear-end collision. Last week, jurors concluded it was Petry's negligence that caused the car wreck. Nonetheless, Stephens left the courthouse empty handed.

The automobile collision trial of Stephens vs. Petry began Monday, Nov. 17, and ended the following day in Judge Milton Shuffield's 136th District Court.

Jurors found that Petry had indeed caused the wreck, but opted not to award Stephens any damages for his mental anguish, pain, medical expenses and alleged impairment.

Stephens sued Petry in January 2007, claiming he received "severe, painful and disabling injuries" after she had rear-ended him on Sept. 5, 2006.

According to court documents, Stephens was traveling north on Concord Road and approaching the Cottonwood Drive intersection when "Petry, driving a 1999 Buick Regal, failed to control her speed and collided with the rear of plaintiff's vehicle."

Stephens's suit also faulted Petry for negligently failing to apply her brakes and maintain a proper lookout.

Stephens was represented by attorney Tim Ferguson of the Ferguson Firm in Beaumont.

Petry was represented by attorney Joel Sprott of the Munisteri, Sprott, Rigby, Newsom & Robbins law firm of Houston.

Case No. D179-569

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