1.08.2008

Legal News That Even I Don't Understand

Back in 2004, a verdict was handed down in Wise County for $23.6 million in connection with the death of a "Kim Hughes; her mother, Joyce Watkins, and her two children, Shiloh Hughes and Afton Hughes Royse, all of Paradise. Royse also lost her two unborn children." Last year, the Fort Worth Court of Appeals took away some of the damages but left most of the verdict intact. The defendants then appealed to the Texas Supreme Court that only has to hear the case if it wants to. Normally, the court's web site would say the Defendant's Petition for Discretionary Review was either "granted" or "denied." At least I think that's the way it works, but I haven't practiced civil law in 20 years. But the court's web site is showing that something is going on because it has requested both sides to submit "Briefs on the merits." (Here.) I'm sure someone out there can explain it. Edit: To "Family Friends". Sorry that I couldn't publish the comment.

19 comments:

Anonymous said...

i remember the case and as i remember it a driver for a big company was not paying attention and hit the family car and kiled all inside now it looks as though the company is not happy that they were ordered to pay. i hope the high courts tells them that if you are responseible for a trdgey like that you must fface the music

gern blansten said...

well you see, barry it's like this:

the, uh... um,...


oh, nevermind.

Anonymous said...

Big money is "talking" to the Supreme Court--and they're listening. I bet this is bad news for the Plaintiffs. I hope I'm wrong and just being too cynical.

Anonymous said...

Barry, it goes like this: if a large company is responsible by a jury for injuring a citizen of Texas, then the company wins at The Supreme Court (otherwise known as the back up Jury).

Anonymous said...

The texas supreme court requests briefing on the merits if a certain number of the justices believe an issue raised in the petition for review warrants further briefing. The court may request briefs on the merits with or without granting the petition for review. Requesting the full briefing does not necessarily mean the court will grant the petition and hear oral argument, but it is a step in that direction.

Anonymous said...

You liberals....who do you think provides your paycheck? I agree TXI is responsible and should ante up to this family. But, dont go on a diatribe about big business and how they always win in court. Open a business, provide jobs, pay benefits, take on risks....and then see reality for what it is. Oh, but wait..you're a liberal..just collecting that government stipend....good grief!

Anonymous said...

Yes, this was a tragedy and a loss to the Watkins family. This family deserves everything. Especially, Shirley & Chrissi for stepping in and raising Jagr. I know Kim and Afton our proud of them for taking him in as their own. This family is remarkable, their mother was their rock and Kim, she was the one no one could replace...Not a day goes by that I dont miss my friend. I just pray justice is served and Kim, Afton and Shiloh are each recognized with a proper headstone. Joyce has a beautiful one. Keep them in your prayers and may god see to it that Willie and his kids get the resolution they need.

M&M said...

You anons don't remember the case very well or have not read the transcripts. Read them and you'll see some very strange decisions made by the judge in favor of the plaintiffs. He wouldn't allow the accident report written up by the highway patrol officer who worked the accident scene, because in that report it is stated the woman crossed the center lane and caused the accident, not the truck driver. He wouldn't allow the cell phone records, which showed the womans phone was in use at the time of the accident. He did allow the plaintiff attorneys to focus on the fact that the driver was an illegal and had used illegal ss# etc. to obtain a cdl license. Besides the driver drove for a trucking company that hauled for TXI, he was not an employee of TXI. It just seemed as though the ruling was based on him being an illegal. His citizenship status has nothing to do with who is at fault in a very tragic accident. I for one am glad they are going to review it.

Anonymous said...

Money will never provide justice!

Anonymous said...

M&M is right. The lady caused the accident!!! I was there. The fact that the driver had obtained a driver's license illegally had absolutely nothing to do with the accident. I agree with the court's decision to review.

Anonymous said...

I too agree with M&M

Everone is just looking for a payday these days.

Accidents happen and thats what this was--MONEY DOES NOT BUY HAPPINESS NOR CAN IT BRING BACK LOVED ONES

Anonymous said...

Your right money wont bring justice, nor will it bring them back; however, no one knows what happened inside Kim's vehicle that day. That is why it is up to a higher court to process the evidence and decide what happened and just because her cell phone was in use doesnt mean she was using it. One of the kids could have been on it. We are all guilty of talking on the cell while driving. But, come on Hwy 114 is a death trap. I lost a parent in a wreck there myself within 2 miles from the scene of her accident. If you are from Wise County you too have probably lost a loved one or friend there as well. It makes me happy to see the DPS working that area when they are and I am glad to see the check station which was put in Bridgeport. However, the companies keeping their trucks in the yard the day they are checking them need to be shut down. If your trucks arent good enough to pass inspection then you dont need to be in business. The saying goes, "To make money you have to spend money." Therefore, quit jeopardizing lives for you dollar. If your mother or dad was killed by a rock hauler you wouldnt run an unsafe truck and just for the record back then when someone was killed on 114 there was no lawsuit filed you buried your family member and accepted the loss. Its time someone cracked down on the trucking companies. If Kim was at fault or not the fact remains that that stretch of highway has never been safe due to rock haulers driving at a high rate of speed.

House of R & R said...

Sorry guys but...I'm with M & M on this one. Those are the exact facts I remember, as well. I hope the Supreme Court looks at all the evidence. ALL.

I live less than a mile of that accident scene. Our neighborhood was abuzz when it happened. All I heard at the time was that it was the pickup’s fault. Knowing this, I thought it was very strange that the truck was blamed in the end. In all fairness, it sounds like it's a good thing the case is being reviewed.

Sometimes, when tragedies such as this occur, it's real easy for us to point the finger at everyone else. Anger weighs in and we refuse to accept reality that maybe our loved ones may have been at fault.

M&M said...

anon 4:03 I agree that one of the passengers could have been on the phone, but the defense attorneys should have had the chance to bring this information before the jury. Remember, they only need to create some doubt in the minds of the jury with ALL the evidence brought forth. And this is totally relevant information as to the guilt or innocence of the defendant. Then the plaintiff attorneys could have brought up this idea of another passenger using the phone and also whoever they were talking to could have been a critical witness to ask the question, "Who were you talking to at the time of the accident".

Bob said...

Preston was right! If M&M is finished making her case against Mrs. Hughes she might want to worry about the case Preston Lowery has against her. The one in which she has all the time in the world to read transcripts not pertaining to city council business on city council time and time during the day to post comments on the Blog. What business were these transcripts to you Mrs. Moody? Maybe, the taxes I pay to the city should go to research Barry's Blog and see how many hours you spend on city tax dollars being the town gossip.

Anonymous said...

WOW! Just WOW! Note to self: never comment on B's blog unless it anonymously.

Anonymous said...

You don't seem to publish a lot of the comments sent your way. Typical liberal democrat. just pick what you want and heck with all the other. be a man a publish them all!

M&M said...

bob: Wrong ID. The transcripts are available on the internet. Barry pointed out a link last May or June, I think.

Anonymous said...

Holy smokes bob that's quite a mouthful there ole buddy!