Jury Verdict for Plaintiff of $525,000- St. Louis City
Scott McPherson, Jr. was traveling on his Suzuki motorcycle on southbound Gravois Road at approximately 6 p.m. on a Friday evening in June. He approached the intersection of Gravois and River Des Peres where his motorcycle collided with defendant’s Chevrolet Trailblazer driven by Matthew Lickenbrock on northbound Gravois.
Plaintiffs’ alleged that defendant failed to yield the right-of-way and made a left turn in front of decedent’s motorcycle, causing a collision. Scott McPherson, Jr. was thrown from his motorcycle and died the same day as a result of the injuries he sustained at the age of 19 years old. McPherson was a former graduate of Bayless High School. Scott’s sister was behind him in traffic on Gravois, following him as she was assisting him in moving his possessions to a new residence. His sister witnessed the accident and death of her brother.
The defendant, Matthew Lickenbrock and his wife and children did not sustain any injuries in the crash when the front end of the Chevy Blazer came in to contact with Scott’s motorcycle.
The defendant claimed he never saw or heard Scott McPherson and his approaching motorcycle at the intersection of Gravois and River Des Peres. The defendant was in the process of making a left-hand turn off of Gravois to proceed onto River Des Peres. It was not contested that the light was a solid green for both drivers. Scott McPherson was attempting to travel through the intersection on a solid green light when the collision occurred.
Three of four eye witnesses testified that Scott McPherson was speeding immediately prior to the crash. Two of the independent eye witnesses testified that McPherson was traveling between 60-80 mph in a 30 mph speed zone prior to the crash.
Stan Oglesby was the expert witness for the defendant. Mr. Oglesby testified McPherson was traveling near 50 mph prior to beginning to brake just before the crash. Dr. Kamal Sabharwal, coroner, testified to Scott McPherson’s cause of death as blunt chest trauma.
No special damages were entered by plaintiff. McPherson was an adult, unmarried and without dependent children. After a five day trial, the jury returned a verdict for plaintiff of $525,000 with contributory negligence of plaintiff of 59.5 percent and 40.5 percent for defendant.