JEFFERSON COUNTY — After deliberating for one hour and fifteen minutes, a Jefferson County jury determined that Ford Motor Company was not liable in crash that occurred outside Fayette, Mississippi Oct. 16, 2004, according to the law firm of Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz.
The plaintiff, Albert Foster, was the passenger of the 2003 Ford Explorer Sport Trac that ran off-road while pulling a trailer. Foster suffered a neck injury resulting in quadriplegia due to the severe, three-rollover event.
Attorneys for the plaintiff contended that the vehicle was defective and unreasonably dangerous and alleged that it could not safely tow a trailer and that the seat belts failed during the accident. Plaintiffs sought $9.5 million in damages against Ford Motor Company.
After a two-week trial, Bill Jones, Barry Ford and Everett White from the Jackson office of Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz, proved that the vehicle can safely tow a trailer and the seat belts were state of the art and reasonably safe. It was also proven that Foster was not wearing his seat belt at the time of the accident.
Co-counsel for Ford were Birmingham, Ala.-based Huie, Fernambucq & Stewart attorneys Gordon Sproule and Patrick Strubel.