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SKETCHES OF COURT: Case settled without liability determination in Sunset Park car accident

November 9, 2015 By Alba Acevedo Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Court sketch by Alba Acevedo
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In this courtroom sketch, Hon. Laura Jacobson listens as attorney Raymond Panek (standing), of the law firm Elefterakis, Elefterakis and Panek, stands before an evidentiary photograph during a direct examination of the plaintiff in the motor vehicle accident trial Jonathan DeJesus v. PJS Electric Inc. and John McCormack. Panek is trial counsel to the law firm Cherny & Podolsky. 

At issue in the bifurcated trial was the determination of liability. DeJesus was driving southbound on Fourth Avenue in Sunset Park, at about 4:30 a.m. in December 2011, when his car was T-boned on the rear passenger side as it was crossing 50th Street. The impact dragged his car across to the median where it then took down the light pole. He and his passengers exited the vehicle via the windows.

McCormack, the defendant driver, was returning with his crew from their work shift in his employer’s construction van. The co-defendants are represented by lead counsel Michael Coffey (seated, center), of the law firm Wood, Smith, Henning & Berman, and second chair Kevin McNiff (at right), of the law firm Mulholland Minion.

DeJesus alleged that the van ran a red light, which McCormack disputed. A non-party witness to the accident, as well as the responding officer, provided testimony for the plaintiff, and the defendants did not call any witnesses. The jury never deliberated on liability or damages, as the trial was settled at close of evidence and prior to closing arguments for the sum of $2.5 million dollars, in the case that concluded last week in Kings County Civil Term.

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