In an effort to recreate the scene when F.O. fell at the Episcopal Church, Panter & Panter retained Professor Herbert J. Spiegel from Hilkar Consulting to calculate the exact position of the moon and weather conditions that existed on October 1, 1993 so that lighting tests could be conducted in a similar condition as when F.O. fell in the Episcopal Church parking lot.
On October 1, 1993, F.O. went to the Episcopal Church to attend an Orchid Club meeting. The lights in the parking lot were not working on this evening, and as F.O. and her friend walked towards the building, F.O. tripped and fell on a speed bump which was not visible due to the dark condition of the parking lot.
Panter, Panter & Sampedro, P.A. first retained Professor Spiegel to provide us with the exact time and date to take lighting tests so that the evidence could be used in Court. Together with an Electrical Engineer (Pedro Martinez), electrical tests were conducted which proved that the lighting conditions on the Church property on the night that F.O. fell were below standards and were unreasonably dangerous.
The Church had prior problems with the lighting system and through discovery Panter, Panter & Sampedro, P.A. was able to establish a strong liability case against the Church.
F.O. suffered a comminuted fracture of the distal femur which extended into the joint. F.O. underwent an open reduction surgical procedure and the doctors installed a plate and screws to connect her leg bones together.
Using a unique technique allowed by the Circuit Court Judge, the case was presented to an Advisory Jury in which statements were presented to the jury by both sides and then the jury was instructed on the law and permitted to decide the case.
Following the jury’s decision, the case was settled for $200,000.00.