The Gould Cooksey Fennell Blog

Indian River County Jury Awards $9.3 Million Verdict

On May 18, 2012 David Carter, Brian Connelly and Jason Odom of GCF’s Personal Injury Group completed a two week trial, resulting in a $9.3 million verdict for client, Leslie Opper.

At the time of the accident in 2009 Mr. Opper was a 41 year old roofer who was a passionate spear fisherman in his off time.

On April 11, 2009 the Plaintiff was operating a small motorcycle/scooter when a 91 year old man turned left in front of him hitting him essentially head on. As a result of the collision Mr. Opper sustained catastrophic injuries to his lower body, including snapped femurs and fractures to the spine and pelvis. The trauma doctors at Holmes Regional Medical Center testified in the case that he was one of the most seriously injured patients they have ever treated and that he had less than 16% chance of living.

As a result, he has undergone over a dozen surgeries and will require ongoing future care. Currently, Mr. Opper can ambulate a short distance with the aid of Canadian crutches, but has to rely on a wheelchair for longer distances. He has fought to recover at every turn, and has, with the assistance of his friends and motorized scooter, gotten back in the water once.

Two days prior to the start of trial, the Defendant admitted liability, so the two week trial was a contest as to the amount of damages. On May 18, 2012, the Indian River County jury returned an award totaling $9.381 million.

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