On October 9, 2019 a Hinds County jury in Jackson rendered a $226,000 verdict in Lewis v. Blakeney. The case involved a 2016 car wreck in Clinton.

Here is the Complaint.

The two day trial before Circuit Judge Tomie Green began on October 8.

The jury awarded $26,000 for past and future medical expenses and $200,000 for pain and suffering. Here is the Judgment.

Word on the street is defendant’s pre-trial settlement offer was $72,000.

Mike Saltaformaggio of Maggio Thompson in Jackson represented the plaintiff.

Scott Rogers of Vernis and Bowling of Mississippi, LLC in Flowood represented the defendant.

My Take:

A win for the plaintiff.

Rejecting a $72,000 offer with $26,000 in medicals seems like a gutsy call. It’s common to see jury verdicts in car wreck cases for less than 2x the meds.

Can’t really fault the defendant if they offered $72,000 pre-trial. Insurance companies have driven the settlement value of car wreck cases under 3x the meds.

The fact the verdict was higher doesn’t necessarily mean defendant’s decision on the offer was bad. This might be one where everyone played their hand correctly and the plaintiff won at showdown. It happens.

  • Michael Wolf

    I think you are right, this looks like a classic example of the lawyers on both sides making the right moves, but then the jury did what juries sometime do.
    Though, I am curious to know how close they got in settlement discussions. We know what the offer was but what about the demand?