Lawsuit alleges defective towing hitch broke and shattered woman's face

Michelle Massey, East Texas Bureau Sep. 8, 2010, 5:46am

MARSHALL-A Longview resident has filed a lawsuit against the manufacturers of a towing hitch after the hitch broke and hit her in the face.

Bethany Clemens filed suit against TriMas Corp. and Cequent Towing Products Inc., doing business as Reese, on Aug. 30 in the Eastern District of Texas, Marshall Division.

The accident occurred on Feb. 24 as Clemens was riding in a pickup truck which was attempting to tow a stuck pick-up out of the mud at a deer lease near Daingerfield.

Clemens states the towing hitch broke and flew through the rear glass of the pickup. According to court records, the hitch along with a towing ball struck Clemens in the face. Clemens sustained cranial and facial bone trauma.

The plaintiff argues the product was defective and unsafe for its intended purposes.

The defendants are accused of product liability including design, marketing and manufacturing defect.

Clemens accuses the defendants of negligence for the design, construction, manufacture, testing and inspecting of the hitch and for failing to heed the results of warranty claims and adjustment records.

The defendants are also accused of failing to heed the results of prior lawsuits.

Clemens is seeking damages for physical pain and mental anguish, physical impairment, medical expenses, lost earnings, lost earning capacity, court costs, interest and attorney's fees.

She is represented by Garrett W. Wilson and Douglas Monsour of The Monsour Law Firm in Longview. Jury trial is requested.

U.S. District Judge T. John Ward is assigned to the case.

Case No. 2:10cv00329

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