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SKETCHES OF COURT: Jury returns defendant’s verdict in police motorcycle accident

January 18, 2018 By Alba Acevedo Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Sketches of Court. Court sketch by Alba Acevedo
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In this courtroom sketch, Hon. Bernard Graham listens as plaintiff’s attorney Dominic DiPrisco (standing), of the law offices of Decolator, Cohen & DiPrisco, addresses the jury during opening remarks in the motor vehicle accident summary jury trial Bergen v. Miji. 

Paul Bergen claims that he was approaching the Brooklyn Bridge exit ramp while riding his police scooter back to his precinct when he was injured as a result of a rear-end impact in July 2014. He alleges that a vehicle which he never saw before the accident was following his motorcycle too closely. 

Ali A Miji testified through the use of an interpreter that he was already driving in the exit ramp when he suddenly noticed Bergen’s scooter alongside him as it hit his car’s passenger side and fell over. Miji was represented by James T. Ehrhardt (seated), trial counsel to the law offices of Cheven Keely & Hatzis. Bengali interpreter Shamin F. Islam is seated at right.

Bergen lost control of the handlebars and fell onto his left side, seriously injuring his arm and shoulder. He was placed on limited duty while he underwent treatment for a tear but eventually needed surgery, which did not resolve his complaints of pain. Bergen never returned to full duty, and ultimately a police medical board hearing determined that he was not capable of performing his duties as a police officer. Bergen, who is now 38 years old, was put on disability pension. 

David Brown (not pictured) continued as defendant’s attorney when Ehrhardt suddenly fell ill during the proceedings. The jury deliberated very briefly before unanimously determining that Miji had not committed the violation of following too closely, in the trial that concluded last week in Kings County Civil term. 


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