Results19 June 2015

Favorable Appellate Decision from the NM Court of Appeals

Cody R. Rogers (Las Cruces) recently received a favorable appellate decision from the New Mexico Court of Appeals, which affirmed a directed verdict entered in favor of the firm’s physician client in a medical negligence matter.  The case, which involved alleged negligent misdiagnosis of gallbladder disease, an alleged unnecessary surgery, and an alleged surgical injury to the patient, was tried in early 2013 by Matthew S. Rappaport (Albuquerque) and Lawrence R. White (formerly Las Cruces).  Following the presentation of evidence by the Plaintiff at trial, the district court granted a directed verdict in favor of Defendant, ruling that Plaintiff had failed to present sufficient expert testimony as to breach of the standard of care and causation.  Plaintiff appealed, and the Court of Appeals originally proposed summary reversal of the district court’s decision.  Ms. Rogers submitted briefing requesting that the Court of Appeals instead place the matter on the general calendar so that it could consider the full record, and this request was granted.  Ms. Rogers wrote the appellate brief on behalf of Defendant, with assistance from Luke A. Salganek (Santa Fe).  On June 19, 2015, the Court of Appeals concluded that the district court was correct in determining that Plaintiff had failed to present necessary expert testimony regarding breach of the standard of care and causation, and affirmed the directed verdict in favor of Defendant.



Results9 June 2015

Summary Judgment in Favor of Defendants

Virginia Anderman obtained summary judgment in a civil rights case where plaintiff claimed that he was wrongfully arrested by defendant without probable cause following a family dispute.  Plaintiff claimed the officer did not properly investigate the facts and that Plaintiff should not have been arrested.  He sued under 42 USC § 1983 and brought tort claims (false arrest, assault and battery and false imprisonment) under state law.  Virginia filed her motion for summary judgment based on qualified immunity grounds arguing that the officer acted reasonably based on the information he had.  The Court agreed with Virginia and granted summary judgment in favor of defendants but declined to rule on the state claims.  There was a mediation held and Plaintiff wanted at least $150,000 to settle.

Recognition28 May 2015

New Mexico Commission on Access to Justice

Results7 May 2015

Favorable Verdict Following a Jury Trial in Las Cruces, NM

Attorney Cody R. Rogers recently obtained a favorable verdict following a jury trial in Las Cruces.  Ms. Rogers, along with Ned S. Fuller, represented the New Mexico State Police, New Mexico Motor Transportation Division and New Mexico Department of Transportation in a case arising from a car accident involving significant burn injuries to Plaintiff, who was rear-ended by a tractor trailer on Interstate 10.  The New Mexico Department of Transportation was conducting road repair work in the area and had established a traffic control zone west of the site of the accident; State Police and Motor Transportation Division closed two lanes of the interstate in an effort to alleviate traffic congestion resulting from the work zone.   The driver of the tractor trailer was inattentive, did not slow in response to traffic conditions or the police presence, and then hit the accelerator pedal rather than the brake after seeing Plaintiff’s vehicle in his lane.  The plaintiff received second and third degree burns over 15-20% of his body, and incurred approximately $230,000.00 in medical expenses.  Plaintiff alleged that the governmental entities were negligent in the design and implementation of the work zone, and that the law enforcement officers’ decision to direct traffic manually was negligent.  Following a four day trial (May  4-7), the jury found that the New Mexico State Police and Motor Transportation were not liable for the accident, and that the driver of the tractor trailer was 90% at fault.  The jury found that New Mexico Department of Transportation was only 10% liable, which resulted in a monetary award for less than Defendants had previously offered to settle the case, and nearly six times less than Plaintiff had demanded to resolve the matter.


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