No. 1031 PHILADELPHIA, 1982, Appeal from an Order in the Court of Common Pleas, Civil Division, of Bradford County, No. 79-3645.
Richard A. Gray, Williamsport, for appellants.
David B. Keeffe, Sayre, for appellees.
Hester, Cavanaugh and Popovich, JJ. Cavanaugh, J. concurred in the result.
[ 319 Pa. Super. Page 312]
On May 14, 1977, appellee, Elizabeth D. Donlin, was a customer in the J.J. Newberry Store, situate at Desmond Street, in the City of Sayre, Bradford County, Pennsylvania. J.J. Newberry Co. is a division of McCrory Corp. J.J. Newberry Co. and McCrory Corp. were defendants below and are appellants herein.
Mrs. Donlin entered the store at 4:45 p.m. through the southern doorway from Desmond Street. She browsed for approximately one-half hour and eventually purchased white socks, coloring books and a package of crayons. It was closing time while Mrs. Donlin was inside the store, and doors were being locked and lights turned off. Having made her purchases, Mrs. Donlin was instructed to leave through the northern exit onto Desmond Street.
[ 319 Pa. Super. Page 313]
Upon leaving, Mrs. Donlin walked through an interior doorway, across a vestibule, and through a second doorway to the outside. She took two steps beyond the exterior doorway and was not yet clear of the open door when her right foot was snagged by a metal strip protruding from the concrete sidewalk. The concrete was crumbling; in fact, Mrs. Donlin detected its deteriorating condition as she walked into the vestibule.
The metal strip obstructed Mrs. Donlin's gait and forced her to fall to the pavement. With the aid of Newberry's assistant manager, she managed to get to her car and drive home alone. X-rays revealed a fracture of the right anklebone. Mrs. Donlin also sustained bruises over the posterior portion of her right hip, recurring pain in her right hip, buttocks and pelvis and an aggravation of a pre-existing lower-back ailment. These injuries prevented Mrs. Donlin from returning to work as a seamstress for the Darling Dress Factory in Waverly, New York, until July 11, 1979.
As a result of these injuries, Mrs. Donlin filed a Complaint in Trespass against appellants in the Court of Common Pleas of Bradford County, Pennsylvania. She demanded damages in excess of $10,000.00 as compensation for pain and suffering, lost earnings and disability. Mrs. Donlin's husband, Leo A. Donlin, joined as a complainant seeking compensation for medical expenses and loss of consortium. He joins Mrs. Donlin as appellee before this Court.
Following a trial by jury, a verdict of $500.00 was awarded to Mr. Donlin and a verdict of $41,770.00 was awarded to Mrs. Donlin. Appellants' motion for new trial and judgment non obstante verdicto was denied by an Order of Court, dated September 19, 1980. A Notice of Appeal from the September 19th Order was timely filed; nevertheless, it was quashed by the Superior Court. Judgment on the verdict was then entered by the ...