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HARRIETT v. BALLAS (11/14/55)

November 14, 1955

HARRIETT
v.
BALLAS, APPELLANT.



Appeal, No. 147, March T., 1955, from judgments of Court of Common Pleas of Washington County, May T., 1953, No. 231, in case of Jeannette Harriett and John Harriett v. Joseph Ballas. Judgments affirmed.

COUNSEL

Stephen D. Marriner, for appellant.

George I. Bloom, with him Bloom, Bloom & Yard, for appellees.

Before Stern, C.j., Stearne, Jones, Musmanno and Arnold, JJ.

Author: Musmanno

[ 383 Pa. Page 125]

OPINION BY MR. JUSTICE MUSMANNO

On September 2, 1951, Mrs. Jeannette Harriett was a passenger in a Ford two-door automobile owned and being driven by Joseph Ballas at a high rate of speed in a southwardly direction on Route 68 through Forrest County. When Ballas arrived at a point in Jenks Township near the Veterans of Foreign Wars headquarters

[ 383 Pa. Page 126]

    bordering Route 68, a car appeared on the other side of the road travelling in the opposite direction, whereupon Ballas applied his brakes with such vigor that the wheels locked, converting the vehicle for the moment into a sled which shot across the center of the highway to strike the other car now stationary and immobilized on its own side of the highway.

As a result of the collision, the passenger Mrs. Harriett suffered serious injuries. In the ensuing lawsuit she and her husband brought against Ballas, the jury returned verdicts in the sums of $15,000 and $2,000. The defendant moved for a new trial, which motion was refused; and from that decision in the Court below, an appeal has been taken to this Court.

The appeal is predicated on four grounds, which will be taken up seriatim:

1. Photographs and alleged improper declarations.

At the trial the wife-plaintiff produced the proverbial "before-and-after" photographs showing her as she looked prior to the accident and then as the world saw her, after the automobile collision wrought changes in her appearance and general health. She testified that the "before" picture, which bore on its reverse side a pencilled notation "11/28/51," was taken in January, 1951. Later she testified that she remembered the picture was made during the "big snow" of 1950, and she specifically designated that date to be November 28, 1950, which date was then substituted on the back of the photograph for the one originally noted there. We see nothing improper about ...


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