Jury finds BISD not negligent for auto collision

By David Yates | Mar 3, 2010

In March 2008, Elizabeth Manning filed suit against the Beaumont Independent School District and one of its bus drivers, claiming the driver's negligence caused an automobile collision in December 2006.

Two years later, a Jefferson County jury found no negligence on the part BISD, awarding Manning nothing for alleged mental anguish, impairment or medical expenses.

The trial of Manning vs. BISD began and ended March 2 in Judge Gary Sanderson's 60th District Court.

According to court documents, Manning claimed BISD's bus driver, Natalie Tillman, caused personal injuries to her by driving "recklessly and carelessly."

Tillman, a former defendant in the case, was non-suited on Nov. 20, 2008.

Court papers say that on Dec. 14, 2006, a "collision occurred because of the recklessness and carelessness of Defendants, causing severe and permanent injuries to Plaintiff."

The suit does not give any more details about where or how the collision occurred. The suit only accuses Tillman of negligently failing to keep a proper lookout, control her speed, apply her brakes and yield the right-of-way.

"BISD was negligent in entrusting its vehicle to Tillman ...," the suit said. "BISD is responsible for the torts of its employee under the doctrine of respondeat superior. Therefore, the Plaintiff will ask the jury to find an amount of compensatory damages that are fair and reasonable under the circumstances."

Manning was represented by Trenton Bond, an attorney for the Reaud, Morgan & Quinn law firm.

BISD was represented by attorney David Oubre.

Case No. B181-461

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