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Verdict in Favor of Drunken Defendant in Single Car Accident

October, 2011- Wm. Tyler Shands, Esq.- Henrico County Circuit Court- Plaintiff and Defendant had been drinking together at a sports bar prior to getting into Defendant’s vehicle and eventually running off the road resulting in an accident.  Plaintiff sustained a broken arm in the accident and incurred medical bills of approximately $40,000.  Plaintiff initially told the ER doctors that he had fallen and broken his arm, but later decided to pursue a case against his host driver.  Mr. Shands defended the case on a theory of assumption of the risk and contributory negligence on the basis that Plaintiff assumed the risk of injury when he chose to get into a vehicle with an intoxicated driver.  Plaintiff claimed that he did not know Defendant was intoxicated and presented witness testimony that Defendant did not appear intoxicated at the bar prior to the accident.  Defendant testified that he and friends had consumed an entire half-gallon of Jagermeister before going to the bar and then had consumed numerous additional drinks and shots in Plaintiff’s presence.  The jury returned a verdict in favor of the Defendant.

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