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EDRICK MCKNIGHT v. CITY PHILADELPHIA AND SCHOOL DISTRICT PHILADELPHIA. APPEAL SCHOOL DISTRICT PHILADELPHIA. EDRICK MCKNIGHT V. SANTEE RUFFIN (05/14/82)

filed: May 14, 1982.

EDRICK MCKNIGHT, A MINOR, BY HIS PARENT AND NATURAL GUARDIAN, BERNICE MCKNIGHT, AND BERNICE MCKNIGHT, IN HER OWN RIGHT
v.
THE CITY OF PHILADELPHIA AND THE SCHOOL DISTRICT OF PHILADELPHIA. APPEAL OF THE SCHOOL DISTRICT OF PHILADELPHIA. EDRICK MCKNIGHT V. SANTEE RUFFIN, APPELLANT



No. 2452 October Term, 1978, No. 84 October Term, 1979, Appeal from the Judgment of the Court of Common Pleas of Philadelphia County, Civil Division, at Nos. 649 May Term, 1970 and 1340 April Term, 1972

COUNSEL

Robert T. Lear, Philadelphia, for the School Dist. of Philadelphia, appellant (at No. 2452).

Leon A. Mankowski, Philadelphia, for Ruffin, appellant (at No. 84).

Daniel L. Thistel, Philadelphia, for appellees (at No. 2452).

Brosky, Cirillo*fn* and Hoffman, JJ.

Author: Brosky

[ 299 Pa. Super. Page 329]

This action was commenced by Edrick McKnight to recover damages for injuries he suffered when he was cut by a saw during a wood shop class. Appellants in these consolidated appeals were among the defendants named below.*fn1 The jury returned a verdict in the amount of $95,000 and following the denial of post-trial motions, these appeals followed. Mr. Ruffin and the School District argue that appellee did not meet his burden of proof as to either their negligence or as to damages. They also contest the admissibility of certain expert testimony. We affirm the decision of the trial court.

[ 299 Pa. Super. Page 330]

The accident occurred in 1970 while Edrick McKnight was an eleventh-grade student at Germantown High School in Philadelphia. He was using a circular saw to cut strips of wood when somehow the finger of one hand was amputated and another was severely injured. Mr. McKnight testified that he could not remember exactly how the accident happened, but it is clear that it was caused by the saw. The guard with which the saw had been equipped had been removed by the wood shop instructor earlier in the semester and remained off at the time of the accident.

Appellant, Ruffin, sought a judgment n. o. v. alleging that appellee had failed to meet his burden of proving that Mr. Ruffin had been negligent or that his negligence had caused the injury.*fn2

Our standard of review of the denial of motions for judgment n. o. v. was explained in Posh Construction, Inc. v. Simmons & Greer, Inc., 292 Pa. Super. 149, 436 A.2d 1192 (1981), as follows:

Further, we must be mindful that judgment n. o. v. will be entered only in a clear case, when the facts are such that no two reasonable persons could fail to agree that the verdict was improper, and any doubts should be resolved in favor of the verdict. See Atkins v. Urban Redevelopment Authority of Pittsburgh, 489 Pa. 344, 414 A.2d 100 (1980); Broxie v. Household Finance Co., 472 Pa. 373, 372 A.2d 741 (1977); Bottorf v. Waltz, 245 Pa. Superior Ct. 139, 369 A.2d 332 (1976). In the resolution of this appeal, we must consider the evidence available to the lower court in the light most favorable to the verdict winner, giving it the benefit of every ...


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