10 IN THE CIRCUIT COURT FOR BALTIMORE CITY, MARYLAND JOHN RUNDLETT, INC - Plaintiff Donald POSNER - Defendant * * * * * CASE NO. 24-C * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * COMPLAINT Plaintiff, John Rundlett, by his undersigned counsel, sues Defendant Donald Posner and, in support, states as follows:COUNT I: NEGLIGENCEPlaintiff John Rundlett is a resident of Baltimore City, Maryland.Defendant Donald Posner is a resident of Anne Arundel County, Maryland.On or about March 10, 2001, Bosley was operating a Bobcat backhoe (“the Bobcat”) on his property at 644 Snail Drive in Glen Burnie, Maryland.The Bobcat was stuck and Bosley was unable to move it forward. Bosley called to Plaintiff to ask him for assistance. Plaintiff surveyed the land on which the Bobcat sat and was unable to determine why the Bobcat was stuck.Plaintiff began to walk back to his property. Moments later, the Defendant, operating the Bobcat in a negligent and careless manner, hit the Plaintiff without warning, pining him up against an automobile, causing Plaintiff severe injury.At all times herein mentioned, Plaintiff was acting in a reasonable, prudent manner.It was the duty of the Defendant to use due care to watch where he was driving, to maintain a proper lookout, to reduce speed to avoid an accident, to maintain a proper distance between his vehicle and the Plaintiff, and to control his vehicle in order to avoid a collision.Defendant breached that duty of due care by failing to use due care by watching where he was driving, failing to maintain a proper lookout, failing to reduce speed to avoid an accident, failing to maintain a proper distance between his vehicle and the Plaintiff, and failing to control his vehicle in order to avoid a collision with Plaintiff.As a direct and proximate result of the negligence of the Defendant, Plaintiff has suffered physical injuries and mental anguish. Plaintiff has incurred expenses for medical care and treatment, medicines, nursing services, physical therapy, and other types of medical related attention. Plaintiff also has lost wages and will continue to lose such wages in the future. Plaintiff continues to suffer physical pain and discomfort from this accident, including a broken wrist that will not heal and two herniated discs at C4-C5 and C5-C6 that will require surgery. All the above damages were directly and proximately caused by the aforementioned negligence of the Defendant and were incurred without contributory negligence or assumption of the risk on the part of the Plaintiff. Plaintiff also did not have the opportunity to avoid this accident. WHEREFORE, the Plaintiff demands judgment against the Defendant for TWO MILLION DOLLARS ($2,000,000.00) plus interests and costs for Count I of Plaintiff’s Complaint.DEMAND FOR JURY TRIALPlaintiff demands a trial by jury. Respectfully submitted,MILLER & ZOIS, LLC
12 Methods of Discovery Why do we have methods of discovery? Depositions – info outside courtInterrogatories- written ?’sRequest for documents and evidenceCase Settled or goes to trial
13 Introduction of Evidence DOCUMENTS –contracts, sales slips, letters,PHYSICAL OBJECTS-weapons,photos, items from a crime sceneWITTNESS TESTIMONY-Introduction of evidenceDocumentsPhysical objectsWitness testimony
14 Interrogatories set of questions Example "state the name, address, and telephone number ofeach person that witnessed the incident,""state the amount that you admit you owe and describe and explain in detail your basis for calculating that amount." Sample interrogatories
15 Examplea) If you filed the Complaint state precisely the classification of the cause of action being filed, a brief factual outline of the case including your contentions as to what the other party or parties did or failed to do, and a succinct statement of the legal issues in the case. If you have asserted defenses, provide a detailed factual basis for the defense or defenses you have asserted.Sample response: This is a personal injury case. Defendant, John Tortfeasor, ran into my car from the rear while I was stopped at the traffic light at Jones Bridge Road at its intersection with Old Milton Parkway.
17 Jury SelectionJuriesdetermine facts of the case & apply law
18 Questions about jury duty How was I selected to serve jury duty?Why should I serve jury duty?How many jurors are selected?6-8 for civil, for criminalWhat if I don’t show up for jury duty?contempt of court (fine $100 up to 3 days in jail)What should I wear?business attireWill I be paid?Yes, $30 a day
19 Name is randomly drawnA juror qualification sheet will be sent outReport to court houseInfo about caseSworn inAnswer ‘sJury is selected
21 Jury ExemptionsMust be employed on a full time basis as a : Public official of the United States, state, or local government who is elected to public office or directly appointed by one elected to office.Must be a member of any governmental police or regular fire dept. (not including volunteer or non-governmental departments).Must be a member in active service of the Armed Forces of the United States.
22 GROUNDS FOR PERMANENT EXCUSE Must be over 70 and requesting to be excused.Must have a current doctor's statement stating that you are unable to serve.Must have served as a juror in the Federal Court within the past 2 years.Must care for 1 or more children under the age of 10 whose health and/or safety would be jeopardized by their absence for jury service, or a person who is essential to the care of aged or infirm persons and does NOT work outside the home.Must be a sole owner/proprietor of a business with no employees where an absence would cause the business to close.Must be a volunteer firefighter, rescue squad member, or ambulance crew
23 Eligibility for Jury Duty In order to be eligible for jury duty, you must be:A citizen of the United StatesAt least 18 years of ageA resident of the county in whichyou are to serve as a jurorAble to communicate in English
24 Not a person who has had your right to vote revoked and not yet Not suffering from a physical or mental disability that prevents you from performing your duties as a juror in a satisfactory mannerNot a person who has had yourright to vote revoked and not yetreinstated as the result of a felonyconvictionNot a law enforcement officer,if the trial is for a criminal case
25 The Litigation Process Commencing an Action2Avoid Litigation13Trial Prep4Trying the Case5Executing a Judgement
26 Pretrial hearing Informal meeting before a judge Tries to get the parties to reach an agreement before it goes to trial.
30 Opening statements Defendant 2nd Plaintiff 1st Info to the jurors Stating what they intend to proveDefendant 2ndPlaintiff 1stInfor to jurors stating what you intent to provePlaintiff 1stDefentant 2ndNews report outlining opening statements
31 OPENING STATEMENTS the most crucial part of the trial - After opening statements, a case unfolds in bits and pieces and not necessarily in any organized manner- research shows that many jurors form strong opinions after opening statements and interpret all of the subsequent evidence in light of those initial impressions- prepare an opening statement that virtually cripples the opposition- opening statements give an overview of what you expect to show through the witnesses and other evidence that will be introduced during the trialOpening statemtentThe most crucial part of the trialCase unfoldsJurors form opionsGives an overview
32 Goals of Opening Statements introduce the case theme to the court and juryPut the story in a compact package so that the jury will be able to get a bird's-eye view and better comprehend and appreciate the issues and the evidence.to make the disjointed evidence make senseIntroduce themeHelp jury comprehend storyThis should make disjointed evidence make sense
33 Goals of Opening Statements Establish rapport with court & juryGet the jury to identify with your causeLawyers need to beSincere, honest, understanding, intelligent, dependable, considerate, warm, kind, friendlyEstablish rapportLawyers need to be sincere, honest, intelligent, dependable, friendly
34 Goals of opening statements IntroBodyConclusionIntroBodyconclusion
35 Goals of Opening statements It’s a statement NOT an argumentBAD: Mr. Hare negligently drove at an excessive speed.GOOD: The speedometer read seventy-three miles per hour, and Mr. Hare was traveling in a fifty-mile per hour speed zone.Only state FACTS!Goals of opening statementNot an argument
36 Opening Statement INTRODUCTION Case theme Summary of facts Enthusiasm for trying caseOpening statementIntroductionCase themeSummary of factsEnthusiasm
37 Sample Themes This is a case about taking chances This is a case about a company that refuses to business the American way.Everything that happened here happened because of greedThis is a case about police brutalityThis is a case about an innocent man wrongly accused.Greed and misfortune led us here todaySample themesthis is a case about taking chances
38 Explain the key issues"Ladies and gentlemen, this lawsuit was filed because the defendant's car was following too closely behind the car of Mary Jane Fox, the plaintiff. The defendant, Mr. Hare, was not paying attention to the traffic ahead of him. As a result, Mary Jane was hit from behind by Mr. Hare. She suffered a broken and separated leg, and she will have this injury for the rest of her life."Explain key issues
39 Key Persons are introduced Personalize your clientIf prosecution – personalize the people of thestate and the need for societal safety"May Fox is an elementary school teacher. Before November 22, 1986, she was a very healthy young woman, twenty-eight years of age. She had been teaching at Pelham Elementary School for six years. Mary Jane is married and the mother of one three-year-old son, Jason. She enjoyed jogging, bicycling, and tennis. Never during the course of any of these activities did she have any trouble with her leg. It was only after that fateful day when Mr. Jones sped through a red light three days before Thanksgiving in 1986 that Mary Jane was left paraplegic and unable to enjoy her previous life, and unable to provide her son with a brother or sister."Key persons are introducedPersonalize your client
40 Body of Opening Statement MOST OF THE INFO HERE!!- set the scene of the factual incidents- describe the instruments of the liability or crime (gun, car, sexual language, etc.)- provide the date, time, and weather if important to your case- reiterate your theme and link it to the issue of your case- then tell your best story of what happened (based on what the evid. will show)- use vivid language when telling the story--make it real for the jury- state the legal elements to be proven (go to the law library to find this)BodySet the sceneDescribe instrumentsReiterate themeUse vivd languageState legal elements
41 conclusion Opening Statements - simply and directly reiterate your top facts and state that the truth will show a verdict for your client.
42 The Litigation Process Commencing an Action2Avoid Litigation13Trial Prep4Trying the Case5Executing a Judgement
43 Introduction of Evidence List possible types of evidence that could be presented in a trial.
44 Introduction of Evidence DOCUMENTS –contracts, sales slips, letters,PHYSICAL OBJECTS-weapons,photos, items from a crime sceneWITTNESS TESTIMONY-Introduction of evidenceDocumentsPhysical objectsWitness testimony
45 Each attorney summarizes the evidence Closing ArgumentsEach attorney summarizes the evidencesuggests reasons why the judge or jury should find in favor of his or her client.
46 The judge must explain the law to the jury Instructions to juryThe judge must explain the law to the jury
47 Verdict judgment, Verdict & Judgment Decision by jury We the jury, findyou guilty on allcharges.judgment,Judge’s decision in the case.
48 Civil vs Criminal CIVIL Offense against indiviudal 6-8 Jurors Liable or not LiableNO POLICENO JAILRemedy the problemCRIMINALOffense against society12-14 JurorsGuilty or Not GuiltyPolice Arrest youPossible JailPunish the offender
49 Remedies An equitable remedy Injunction The payment of damages Specific performancefulfill promiseInjunctionprevent
50 Criminal Trial Procedure ArrestDeprived of FreedomOccurs with or w/o a warrantRead Miranda rights
51 Criminal Trial Procedure Rights of the defendantMiranda RightsWhat crimeNames of officersPhone CallMay be released on bail$ left with court
52 Miranda Rights WARNING OF RIGHTS 1. You have the right to remain silent and refuse to answer questions. Do you understand? 2. Anything you do say may be used against you in a court of law. Do you understand? 3. You have the right to consult an attorney before speaking to the police and to have an attorney present during questioning now or in the future. Do you understand? 4. If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be appointed for you before any questioning if you wish. Do you understand? 5. If you decide to answer questions now without an attorney present you will still have the right to stop answering at any time until you talk to an attorney. Do you understand? 6. Knowing and understanding your rights as I have explained them to you, are you willing to answer my questions without an attorney present?
53 Search & Seizure W/out Warrant With Warrant When arrested Person, car, houseLimited area on warrantOtherwise obtain permissionW/out WarrantWhen arrestedLimited searchBelieve a weapon is on you (Frisk)Believe car contains something illegalPlainviewProbable causeSchool officials
54 Search & SeizureSchool OfficialsMay search students w/o warrant
55 Answer the following Questions What is an Information? – pg 45What is the purpose of the Grand Jury? Pg 45Notes over ArraignmentsIdentify Trial procedures in Fracture.
56 Arraignment Informed of complaint & Rights Judge dismisses or goes to trialProsecutor prepares information (charges)Preliminary HearingEvidence & witnessesGrand Jury decides whether person will stand trialIndictment issuedArraignment - To Court after arrestRead indictmentPlead guilty or not guiltySentencing or trial
57 Person is still not guilty. Preliminary HearingGrand juryHears evidence & testimonyIf Crime has been committedIssue indictment (Written accusation)ArraignmentRead indictmentPleads guilty or not guiltyInformed of rightsGUILTY NOT GUILTYSENTENCED TRIALPerson is still not guilty.
58 The Trial Jurors are selected Opening statements, Introduce evidence Closing statementsJury instructions, announces decisionIf guilty, judge imposes sentence
60 Punishments FINES – Pmt of $ IMPRISONMENT – DEATH PENALTY Indeterminate or definiteMandatory sentence (not altered)DEATH PENALTYThree PhasesJury determines guiltPunishment decidedAppeal taken to state’s highest court
61 Floyd County Court Floyd County Court Floyd County Court hears class "D" felonies, misdemeanors, infractions, and certain violations of local ordinances. Floyd County Court hears contract, tort and landlord/tenant cases with a jurisdictional limit of $10,000 and small claims filings under $3,000. Floyd County Court is one of only four County Courts remaining in Indiana
62 Floyd Superior CourtFloyd Superior Court serves the public by providing a fair, accessible, effective and responsive forum to decide civil, criminal and other legal matters with the objective of resolving conflicts efficiently while maintaining confidence in the judiciary and enhancing community values.
63 Floyd Circuit Court Indiana's Fifty-second Judicial Circuit, The Floyd Circuit Court has original jurisdiction to preside over all civil and criminal cases.The Floyd Circuit Court has exclusive jurisdiction in Floyd County over all probate/estate, trust and juvenile cases.