Suit focuses on crash into car parked on shoulder

Kelly Holleran Nov. 22, 2010, 5:38am


A Beaumont man has filed suit against the driver who allegedly slammed into his vehicle as he sat parked on the side of the road.

Robert Mann claims he was stopped on the shoulder of an overpass to help his daughter, who had been involved in a collision on Dec. 11, 2008.

Suddenly, defendant Ben S. Dunham skidded out of control and slammed into Mann's vehicle, according to the complaint filed Nov. 12 in Jefferson County District Court.

"The force of the initial impact shoved Plaintiff's vehicle into his daughter's vehicle, spinning the Defendant's vehicle out of control, causing him to slam into Plaintiff a second time," the suit states.

Because of the collision, Mann suffered severe pain to his neck, back, both hips, right arm, left leg and shoulders, the complaint says. As a result of his injuries, Mann claims he incurred medical costs; lost his earnings and his earning capacity; and sustained physical impairment, physical pain, mental anguish and disfigurement.

At the time of the collision, Mann claims he had a policy through defendant Allstate Indemnity Co. that was supposed to cover him if he had an accident with an under-insured motorist, according to the complaint.

Following his collision, Mann contacted Allstate adjuster and defendant Rocio Soto to advise him of his claim for full policy limits under his policy, the suit states. However, Allstate and Soto refused to consider some of the medical bills Mann submitted, the complaint says.

Mann alleges breach of contract, breach of the duty of good faith and fair dealing, violation of the Texas Insurance Code and violation of the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act against Allstate and Soto.

In his complaint, Mann is seeking an unspecified judgment against Mann, plus pre-judgment interest, costs and other relief to which he may be entitled.

He is also seeking statutory, actual and punitive damages against Soto, plus pre- and post-judgment interest, treble damages, attorneys' fees, costs and other relief the court deems just.

Jonathan C. Juhan of Beaumont will be representing him.

The case has been assigned to Judge Milton Shuffield, 136th District Court.

Case No. D188-792

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