(Please note: the names and locations of all parties have been changed to protect the confidentiality of the participants in this bus accident/personal injury case and its proceedings.)
SUMMARY OF EYEWITNESS TESTIMONY
All three non-party eyewitnesses testified they saw a pedestrian (Chance) walking in the crosswalk before the turning bus struck her:
1. Percipient non-party eyewitness #1, Annie Timmon, was a passenger on the subject bus sitting behind the driver. She testified via videotape that while sitting at a window several rows behind Davie, she saw Ms Chance walking “normal” on the sidewalk alongside the bus before it turned. She saw Ms. Chance walking beyond the curb, after he front of the bus had also entered the intersection. Ms. Timmon testifies: I saw they were going to touch… I thought I was in Mexico, and in Mexico the pedestrian waits in the middle of the street waiting for the bus to go by. I thought that she was going to stop at the center at the cane – the lane that it’s at the center. And when I saw that she was about to have contact with the bus, then I screamed… Q: Did you see what happened to this pedestrian? A: No … I couldn’t see. Q: Where was the pedestrian when you last saw her? A: Ahead when she was about to have contact with the bus. (Timmon Depo., 16:7 – 18:1.)
Argument: This testimony clearly supports Plaintiffs contention that a normally walking Chance was visible to the left of the bus driver Davie after he had entered he intersection but before he started to turn left striking her. Since she was walking alongside the bus, she was in the crosswalk area just having exited the sidewalk. Molly Chance had every right to enter the crosswalk on a green signal even after the bus had entered the intersection because she was walking straight and therefore had the right of way over the turning Davie just like eastbound pedestrians Davie had stopped for. If Timmon could see Chance as bus and pedestrian passed each other, certainly Davie should have seen her too, if he had looked to his left.
2. Percipient non-party eyewitness #2, Tina Jones, managing a hotel whose lobby and portico overlooked the subject intersection and its eastern approach along Elm Street testified that she saw Ms. Chance enter the 4th Street crosswalk at a normal walking pace after which a left turning bus obscured her view of the crosswalk. She then learned from a subsequent commotion that this bus apparently hit Chance near the center of the street that prompted her to call 911 to report the accident. (RT of Jones’s Direct Testimony, 1: 3-13.)
Argument: This was the most damning testimony of all provided as it was by a middle aged, middle class, Caucasian supervisor who suffered no cross examination that effectively impeached her beyond a quibble as to where on the portico or lobby she stood as she saw the incident. No testimony was offered to show she couldn’t see what see reported from either vantage. Nothing was offered to show bias. This scenario would have placed Molly Chance in the cross-hairs of bus driver Davie’s windshield if he was paying attention to anything other than beating the stale green light and traffic approaching the intersection from his right. (See Part 6 of 13.)
For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.