LAKELAND, FL, December 06, 2022 /24-7PressRelease/ -- Central Florida lawyers C. Garrett Gaa, John Mark Hundhausen, and David C. Dismuke of Dismuke Law 1-800-ASK-DAVE, a personal injury firm headquartered in Lakeland, Florida, won a traffic crash civil jury verdict of $30,300,450.22 on November 29, 2022, in the Tenth Judicial Circuit in Bartow, Polk County Florida.
The matter involved a local teen, formerly of Haines City, Florida, who was jogging in his neighborhood on the evening of April 3, 2018, and was struck by a drunk driver operating a pickup truck. The impact hurled the teen, who had moved onto a neighbor's lawn to avoid the vehicle as he saw it approaching head-on, approximately 42 feet through the air, before landing on a concrete driveway.
After striking an entertainment center by the trash at the residence's curb, the truck hit the teen and then came to a halt once it struck a full-sized painter's van – moving the van approximately six feet.
Then, the teen lay on the ground in the driveway, less than ten feet from the driver-side window of the crashed pickup, bleeding from a head wound and cracked skull. Within full view of the driver of the pickup, the driver maneuvered his vehicle and fled the scene, leaving behind the dying teen and scattered bits and pieces of his truck and debris.
Of his many injuries, the teen suffered a traumatic brain injury, a fractured skull, and a broken ankle. His parents, who were home then, heard the sirens in the neighborhood and were on the scene within minutes, along with first responders and neighbors. Immediately upon receiving lifesaving treatment at the scene, the teen was airlifted to Osceola Regional Medical Center.
After fleeing the scene, the driver concealed the truck at a large property nearby, covering it with fencing and signage to hide it from detection from the ground and air. Following several Crime Stopper tips and help from the local community, investigators at the Polk County Sheriff's Office were able to locate the vehicle and determine the driver had fled the state. Working with agencies in Hillsborough County, Florida, Las Vegas, Nevada, and at the Tampa International Airport, the Polk County Sheriff's Office apprehended the driver upon his return to the state.
The six jurors included in the civil jury verdict awarded $10 million in punitive damages against the drunk driver, indicating that the Polk County community felt this conscious disregard for human life should be punished.
The teen and his family want to thank all the first responders, nurses and doctors, their church, friends and family, and everyone who has sent a prayer their way these past five years. Thank you, everyone.
About Dismuke Law
Our firm was founded in 2015 by David C. Dismuke, a Florida Bar Board Certified Civil Trial Law Attorney who has 18 years of legal experience. Dave believes in standing up against bullies, which in the realm of personal injury law includes insurance companies and large corporations that try to undervalue or deny claims to protect their profits. Dave takes pride in fighting for his clients. We offer a free consultation to review your case and determine how we can best assist you.
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