SKETCHES OF COURT: Jury finds both parties at fault in bicycle-car collision
In this courtroom sketch, Hon. Bernard Graham listens as defendant’s attorney Paul Koors (standing), trial counsel to the law firm Baker, McEvoy, Morrissey & Moskovits, cross-examines a police officer about an accident report during testimony in the motor vehicle-bicycle collision trial Sanchez v. Sevilla.
At issue was the determination of liability. Court reporter Gail Eng is recording the proceedings.
Miguel Sanchez, the plaintiff, was pedaling westbound along 39th Street from his home to his job in Brooklyn around 6:30 a.m. on Feb. 1, 2014. He testified that he wore a helmet with reflective material and tape and had activated the lights on the front and back of his Mongoose mountain bike. Sanchez was represented by Dennis Breen (at right) of the law firm Lurie, Ilchert, MacDonnell & Ryan.
Traveling eastbound along the same stretch, Luis Sevilla was making a left turn into a motel driveway between Fifth and Sixth avenues to pick up a fare. He testified that he was summoned to the hotel in response to a dispatch call. He was aware of an accident only after hearing a noise and feeling an impact.
Sanchez testified that he saw a woman hail the cab and that the livery driver moved quickly. He alleged there was no time and nothing he could do to avoid a collision. Sevilla denied responding to a street hail.
Koors alleged that the plaintiff had the most opportunity to prevent the accident, since his client never saw Sanchez before the collision.
The jury returned a unanimous verdict that both parties were at fault, attributing the defendant 60 percent and the plaintiff 40 percent liability in causing the accident.
The trial resumes this week for the damages phase in Kings County Civil Term.
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