Three day car wreck trial wraps up with topsy-turvy verdict

By David Yates | Mar 17, 2009

Although jurors found him to be only 30 percent responsible for causing an automobile collision several years ago, William Connally was still ordered to pay Sherrie Pool $1,500 in damages.

The three day trial of Pool vs. Connally ended Wednesday, March 13, with Jefferson County jurors awarding Pool $300 in past medical expenses and $1,210.80 in property damage.

Court documents show Pool sued Connally and another individually by the name of Don Jorgensen in August 2006, claiming both defendants caused a car wreck on Interstate 10 nearly five years ago.

According to Pool's suit, on Aug. 31, 2004, she was traveling on I-10 when a traffic jam forced her to come to a complete stop on the freeway.

"Connally was traveling behind plaintiff's vehicle and failed to stop within a safe distance," the suit states, adding that Jorgensen, who was traveling behind Connally, rear-ended him and forced his vehicle to strike Pool's.

Rather than defend himself in court, Jorgensen opted to settle on Jan. 29, court papers say.

During Connally's trial, jurors found that Jorgensen was 70 percent liable for causing the collision, but still decided to award damages to Pool.

Motions in limine prohibited the defense from telling jurors that Pool received insurance proceeds and money from other avenues, such as her employer, Social Security, Welfare and the Veterans Administration.

She was represented by attorney Giles Kibbe of the Weller, Green, Toups & Terrell law firm.

Connally was represented by Mark Lambert, attorney for the Benckenstein, Norwell and Nathan law firm.

Case No. E177-616

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