This case is being held in the Supreme Court located in Bronx County. The plaintiff in the case is German Medina. The defendants in the case are Chile Communications, Inc. et al.
The trial for this action occurred before a jury from August 10th through the 15th, 2005. On the last day of the trial the jury awarded the plaintiff damages in the amount of $300,000 for past pain and suffering and in the amount of $700,000 for future pain and suffering over 10 years. The defendants are moving to reduce the verdict for both the past and future pain and suffering on the basis that the verdict is excessive.
History of the Attack
The plaintiff testified that the pit bull owned by the defendant came running at him at full speed and jumped on him. The dog tried to bite him in the throat. He said that the thought the worst when the dog began biting him. The dog ripped his clothing apart and bit him in the stomach and then in his penis. The plaintiff went into shock from the fast sequence of events and the amount of pain and bleeding he was suffering from. The plaintiff was admitted to the hospital and his wounds were treated. He was given strong antibiotics, pain medication, and rabies injections.
Evidence of Damages
During the trial the testimony of the plaintiff, his expert physician, and the expert physician of the defendant all showed that the plaintiff had suffered and continued to suffer from a combination of several injuries that diminished his lifestyle and ability to enjoy life. One of the main components of the suffering is emotional distress caused by the violent attack from the dog. The plaintiff continues to duffer from nightmares, which wake him and cause lost sleep, reducing his quality of life. In addition, there is the pain and suffering caused directly from the bites to his stomach and his penis. The nerve damage and scar on his penis cause pain, loss of sensation, and sexual dysfunction.
The medical records from the patient were submitted into evidence. This included photographs of the wounds to the abdomen for the first month after the attack and pictures of the current scars on his abdomen and penis.
The plaintiff submitted sufficient evidence of his injuries to prove the resulting pain and suffering from the incident involving the defendant’s dog. The jury was given testimony from the plaintiff as well as from two doctors. Each of these testimonies complemented each other in their facts. These testimonies led to the jury awarding the plaintiff both past and future damages for the injuries he sustained from the dog.
The defendants are stating that the injuries were minimal. However, they have not supplied any medical testimony to support their assessment in this matter as even the doctor they presented supported the case of the plaintiff.
The court finds that the amounts awarded by the jury were not so excessive as to deviate from reasonable compensation. The injuries sustained by the plaintiff are unique, which allows for the jury to assess his damages and set their own benchmark for the case. For these reasons the court is denying the motion of the defendant to reduce the previous verdict from the jury.
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