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PADULA v. GODSHALK. (06/15/60)

June 15, 1960

PADULA, APPELLANT,
v.
GODSHALK.



Appeal, No. 461, Oct. T., 1959, from judgment of Court of Common Pleas of Northampton County, July T., 1958, No. 61, in case of Frank Padula v. Vernon Godshalk. Judgment affirmed.

COUNSEL

John B. O'Brien, with him Herbert Fishbone, for appellant.

A. Albert Gross, with him Gross & Herster, for appellee.

Before Rhodes, P.j., Gunther, Wright, Woodside, Ervin, and Watkins, JJ. (hirt, J., absent).

Author: Watkins

[ 192 Pa. Super. Page 619]

OPINION BY WATKINS, J.

This is an appeal from the judgment of the Court of Common Pleas of Northampton County, entered on the verdict of a jury in favor of Frank Padula, plaintiff-appellant, and against Vernon Godshalk, defendant-appellee; and the refusal to grant a new trial on the ground of the inadequacy of the verdict.

Frank Padula and Michael Padula brought an action in trespass against Vernon Godshalk for personal injuries sustained by Frank Padula, and property damages to a motorcycle owned by Michael Padula.

[ 192 Pa. Super. Page 620]

This action was severed and Frank Padula was named an additional defendant. Vernon Godshalk counterclaimed against Michael Padula, alleging agency, but after verdict rendered, the counterclaim was abandoned.

The three cases were tried together. In the Frank Padula action, the jury rendered a verdict in his favor, in the sum of $1638; in the counterclaim, the jury returned a verdict in favor of Michael Padula; and in the severed action, the jury returned a verdict for Michael Padula in the amount of $400. A motion for judgment non obstante veredicto, filed by the appellee, and a motion for a new trial for inadequacy, filed by the appellant, were dismissed by the court below and judgment entered on the verdict. The only question before us, on this appeal, is the denial of a new trial.

On July 16, 1956, Frank Padula was employed as a farm laborer by a partnership composed of his mother and three brothers, operating two farms. These farms have been described as the North farm and the South farm. In addition to Frank, there was another brother, James, employed by the partnership.

On the day of the accident Frank was working on the South farm with his brothers making bins for the storage of grain. Shortly before 4:00 p.m. the brothers left the South farm to go to the North farm. According to the story of the appellant and his witnesses, Michael and Joseph left first in an automobile, followed by Samuel, in another automobile and finally by Frank, on a motorcycle, owned by Michael. As they left, the motorcycle operated by Frank was estimated to be 300 to 600 feet behind the car operated by Samuel. The distance between the two farms is about one and ...


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