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THOMPSON v. IANNUZZI. (04/17/61)

April 17, 1961

THOMPSON, APPELLANT,
v.
IANNUZZI.



Appeal, No. 92, March T., 1960, from judgment of Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County, Jan. T., 1956, No. 431, in case of Anna Marie Thompson et al. v. Michael Iannuzzi. Judgment reversed.

COUNSEL

Herbert N. Rosenberg, for appellant.

Frederick N. Egler, with him Reed & Egler, for appellee.

Before Jones, C.j., Bell, Musmanno, Jones, Cohen, Bok and Eagen, JJ.

Author: Musmanno

[ 403 Pa. Page 329]

OPINION BY MR. JUSTICE MUSMANNO.

On September 15, 1955, Anna Marie Thompson was riding with four of her children in the back seat of a car owned and being driven by her husband Harry P.

[ 403 Pa. Page 330]

Thompson. A car operated by Michael Iannuzzi struck the Thompson automobile in the rear. The force of the collision threw Mrs. Thompson against the front seat and she then fell to the floor, her back hitting the "steel part in the back of the front seat." She and her husband brought suit against Iannuzzi and at the ensuing trial the jury returned a verdict which read as follows: "We find the Defendant, Michael Iannuzzi, negligent in the operation of his motor vehicle and responsible to Harry P. Thompson for submitted bills of Seven Hundred Fifty-eight and 20/100 ($758.20) Dollars. We do not find the defendant, Michael Iannuzzi, responsible for any damages in regard to the other suits connected with this case."

Mrs. Thompson moved for a new trial alleging inconsistency in the verdict since it reimbursed the husband for medical expenses incurred in connection with her injuries, yet offered no recompense to her, the principal subject of the lawsuit. The lower court refused the motion and the plaintiffs appealed.

Since the jury returned a verdict in behalf of the husband-plaintiff, it had to conclude that the defendant Iannuzzi was negligent. In fact, the verdict makes a specific statement to that effect. Thus, having found the defendant negligent, it became the jury's duty to determine to what extent the defendant was monetarily responsible for the losses suffered by his victims as the result of his negligence.

Mrs. Thompson testified that following the accident she suffered severe headaches and pains in her back and neck. Dr. Philip A. Faix who examined her testified: "She complained of pain in her neck region and had some spasm in the cervical spine and in her low ...


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