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Verizon to Pay $3 Million to Settle Lawsuit

Angela Leone, Marketing & PR Coordinator


Verizon to Pay $3 Million to Settle Lawsuit

PHILADELPHIA, PA – July 23, 2014

After more than a week of trial, Verizon Pennsylvania, LLC (Verizon) has agreed to pay $3 million to settle a lawsuit brought by Patricia Pinkerton, the injured victim of a crash caused by a distracted Verizon bucket truck driver. On February 27, 2012, Ms. Pinkerton was stopped on Garrett Road in Upper Darby Township, PA when the driver of the bucket truck, Richard McCollick, rear-ended Ms. Pinkerton’s vehicle, seriously injuring her.

According to Verizon’s interrogatory answers and information adduced at trial, at the time of the crash, McCollick was on hold with a Verizon employee on his personal cell phone while simultaneously looking at his business cell phone.

Ms. Pinkerton sustained a mild traumatic brain injury, resulting in cognitive deficits and memory loss. She also suffered disc herniations in her neck and back for which doctors have recommended surgery. Ms. Pinkerton’s and Verizon’s physicians and neuropsychologists all agreed that the crash caused her brain injury and ended her 32-year career as a nurse.

The plaintiff was represented by Joseph L. Messa, Jr. and Thomas N. Sweeney in the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas. When asked about the settlement, Mr. Messa stated that he was “glad to see the company taking responsibility for the injuries its employee caused to an innocent woman.” Mr. Messa went on to say, “My clients and I are happy that medical expenses – past, present, and future – will all be taken care of.” Tom Sweeney commented on the dangers of distracted driving, noting that “cell phones are involved in over a million car crashes a year, killing almost 6,000 people a year. No text message is worth a life and our client is lucky to have hers.”

The Honorable Angelo J. Foglietta presided over the six-day trial.

Joseph L. Messa, Jr. is an AV-rated attorney, listed in the Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers. He is a member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum and was named a Top 100 Trial Lawyer by The National Trial Lawyers. Mr. Messa is also an advocate of the American Board of Trial Advocates. He has been recognized as a Pennsylvania Super Lawyer from 2009 to 2014 and was selected to the Top 100 Pennsylvania and Top 100 Philadelphia lists for 2012 and 2013. Mr. Messa has successfully litigated multiple serious injury cases to seven- and eight-figure verdicts and settlements in medical malpractice, products liability, fire and burn injury and construction/work injury matters.

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About Messa & Associates, P.C.
Messa & Associates, P.C. represents individuals and their families in complex personal injury matters, including catastrophic injury, medical malpractice, product liability, motor vehicle accidents, fires and explosions. Our attorneys serve Pennsylvania clients throughout the state, including in Philadelphia and other surrounding communities in Montgomery County, Chester County, Delaware County, and Bucks County. Messa & Associates are also proud to serve New Jersey clients throughout that state, and also litigate selected cases throughout the country.

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