During closing rebuttal last week at trial over a devastating truck crash, Pete Law played off of his Atlanta roots to appeal to a Whitfield County, Georgia jury and help win an 8-figure verdict.
Donald Monroe was struck by a pickup truck that swerved to avoid a tractor-trailer, which had pulled onto South Dixie Highway in Dalton, Georgia. The February 2016 crash forced doctors to amputate Monroe’s left leg below the knee and required multiple surgeries on his right leg.
Pete Law and Michael Moran, of Atlanta’s Law & Moran, represented Monroe and his wife in the trial, held in Dalton, Georgia, a town of about 35,000 people near the Tennessee border.
Throughout trial, the fact that Law & Moran hailed from Atlanta was a running theme, particularly when it came to Law’s fast speaking style.
Rather than shy away from it, however, Law responded with humor. And during closing rebuttal, he drew upon his Atlanta background when arguing his damage request.
“They like to talk [that] I’m from Atlanta. They like to say that: I’m a fast-talking lawyer from Atlanta,” Law said. “And thank God I talk fast because we can go into next week if we didn’t talk fast, right?”
Law then told jurors he was seeking $800,000 a year for Monroe’s pain and suffering. “That’s what I’d ask for in Atlanta. That’s what I’d ask for in Tennessee. And that’s what I’m going to ask for from the good people in Dalton,” Law said.
Law outlined Monroe’s struggles with his amputation, the wear and tear on his joints and the medical needs he would have for the rest of his life, and noted Georgia’s mortality table estimated Monroe would live another 27 years.
There’s no sign in this county, where you come in and it says ‘Life is cheap here. Pain and suffering is worth less in Dalton… than it is down there in Atlanta,’” Law said. “There’s no sign that says that.”
The jury took less than two hours to hand down its $21.6 million verdict, which included $20 million to Monroe and $1.6 million to his wife, Rhonda.
Email Arlin Crisco at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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