Gainesville, FL— Attorneys debated the injuries a Florida man says he suffered in a rear-end collision, as trial began Tuesday against the driver who caused the crash. Ortiz v. Uy, 2020-CA-002198.
Jose Ortiz was stopped at a red light in his Honda CRV when he was struck from behind by a car driven by Gina Uy. Ortiz says the January 2020 crash, on State Road 121 in Gainesville, Florida, injured his neck, shoulder, and back, and left him with long-term back pain.
Uy admits responsibility for the crash, leaving jurors to focus on damages in the case. In Tuesday’s openings, Ortiz’s attorney, Morgan & Morgan’s Keith Mitnik, walked jurors through evidence he said showed the crash forced Ortiz to undergo a range of medical treatments, including physical therapy, pain injections, and surgery. And he said Ortiz’s back pain continues to impact his daily life.
“You’re going to see the difference in the picture of his life from before to now, [and] all of the things… done medically to try and help manage the pain he now lives with,” Mitnik said. “This is somebody living with [pain] as a constant companion in his life.”
But the defense argues the crash did not cause all of Ortiz’s back issues. During Wednesday’s openings, Kubicki Draper’s Erin Johnston previewed evidence of Ortiz’s medical history, which she said showed he complained of back pain stemming from incidents long before the crash. And Johnston added Ortiz had not given a complete history of his back problems to the doctors that treated him following the crash.
“The history that plaintiff relayed to his own doctors is not the full story,” Johnston said. “And we expect over the next couple of days the evidence and the testimony will show you the full story.”
Trial is expected to wrap before the end of the week.
Email Arlin Crisco at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Not a subscriber?