Plaintiff sued the City of Chicago Heights and others alleging that he was deprived of his constitutional rights after his murder and attempted murder convictions were overturned. The defendants challenged the expert witness testimony of plaintiff’s police practices expert.
- InternMatch, Inc. v. Nxtbigthing, LLC – United States District Court – Northern District of California – March 28th, 2016 – In this trademark infringement case, the defendants have filed a motion to exclude the testimony of Joseph A. Greco, P.E. (electrical engineering expert witness). Mr. Greco was called as an expert to opine that Chad Batterman (defendant) fabricated a surge. His report stated that power surges are rare and that there was no abnormal electrical activity on the day of the alleged surge. The defendants state that Mr. Greco’s testimony should be excluded because it is not reliable. The court denied the motion to exclude.
- Oliveros v. BNSF Railway Company – United States District Court – District of Nebraska – March 29th, 2016 – In this case, filed under the Federal Employers Liability Act, the defendant has filed a motion to exclude the testimony of Alan Blackwell (railroad expert witness). Mr. Blackwell was to opine on the following: 1) vegetation and lighting, 2) crew change locations, 3) alternative crew change locations, and 4) ballast. The defendant’s state that Mr. Brickwell’s testimony should be excluded for numerous reasons, including reliability. The court denied the motion in part and granted it in part, the latter being that Mr. Blackwell cannot testify regarding any legal matters.
- American Home Assurance Company; Cargill Meat Solutions Corporation v. Greater Omaha Packing Co., Inc – United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit – April 5th, 2016 – This action on appeal concerns an outbreak of E. coli O157:H7 in cow meat. Cargill filed suit against Greater Omaha for breach of contract and warranties. To help prove their case, Cargil hired Lee Harrison, M.D., Randall Singer, Ph.D, and Dr. Angie Siemens (epidemiology expert witnesses). Drs. Harrison and Singer concluded that Greater Omaha was the source of the E. coli O157:H7 outbreak. Greater Omaha filed a motion to exclude the testimony of these experts, stating that they ignored two case patients that would disprove their conclusions. The district court denied the motion to exclude and the present appeals court upheld the decision.
- Trask v. Olin Corp – United States District Court – Western District of Pennsylvania – March 28th, 2016 – This is a products-liability case in which a Winchester Model 94 rifle was claimed to have fired accidentally, injuring two of the Plaintiffs. The defendants (Olin) filed a Daubert motion to exclude the expert testimony of the plaintiff’s two experts, Michael Knox (forensic engineering expert witness) and Charles Powell (metallurgy expert witness). The court denied the motion to exclude.
- Tajonera et al v. Black Elk Energy Offshore Operations – United States District Court – Eastern District of Louisiana – March 28th, 2016 – This case involves an explosion on the Black Elk Energy West Delta 32 Block Platform in the Gulf of Mexico. The plaintiffs have filed a motion to exclude the expert testimony of Calvin Barnhill (oil & gas expert witness). The court granted the motion to exclude.
- Henkel v. Wagner et al – United States District Court – Southern District of New York – March 29th, 2016 – In this case, the plaintiff (Henkel) sued the defendants (Wagner and his law firm) for legal malpractice in an underlying employment matter. Both parties have filed Daubert motions to exclude testimony of the others expert witnesses. Those experts are: Steven E. Hall (compensation expert witness) for the plaintiff, Dr. Josefina Tranfa-Abboud (economics expert witness) for the defendant , and Ray Nardo, Esq (labor law expert witness) for the defense. The court denied all three of the motions.
- This case – (STATE OF OHIO v. JUDITH I. HAWKEY – COURT OF APPEALS OF OHIO – THIRD APPELLATE DISTRICT – March 28th, 2016) involves the conviction of the appellant (Hawkey). She appeals the life in prison sentence imposed on her by the Defiance County Common Pleas Court. Hawkey was found guilty of aggravated murder of her husband, insurance fraud and child endangering. One part of the appeal entails that the lower court erred when it allowed the state’s child abuse expert witness, (Dr. Barbara Knox) to opine that child torture was a form of child abuse. Hawkey challenged this testimony, stating that it was not accepted in the scientific community. Knox admitted that she created the definition of child torture, but it has not been accepted as a formal medical definition. Hawkey states that because the term “child torture” is not accepted by the medical community, and not subject to peer review, Knox’s testimony surrounding that phrase should have been excluded. The appeals court agreed and sustained the assignment of error.
- Johnson v. Light – United States District Court – Western District of Tennessee – March 28th, 2016 – This negligence action involves the alleged failure to provide utility service, which caused plaintiff’s decedent to die of hypothermia and heat stroke. The defendants have filed a motion to exclude the expert witness testimony of Miguel Laboy, M.D (pathology expert witnesses), who would opine that the decedent died from probable heat stroke. The defense stated that Dr. Laboy’s testimony will not assist the jury and is unreliable. The court granted the motion to exclude.
- Johnson v. Thor Motor Coach, Inc – United States District Court – Middle District of Florida – March 28th, 2016 – The plaintiffs filed this action against defendants for breach of express warranty and violation of the Florida Lemon Law. The plaintiff’s allege that the defendants did not repair defects on the slide out room of their recreational vehicle. The Johnson’s hired Richard Falco (automotive expert witness) to opine whether the RV has a manufacturing defect with respect to the slide out room. The defendant’s have filed a motion to exclude Falco’s testimony on the grounds of qualifications and unreliability. The court denied the motion to exclude.
Plaintiff filed action against defendants for personal injuries sustained while vacationing at their resort. Plaintiff’s pool design expert was not allowed based on numerous Daubert factors.
- Stewart v. Capital Safety USA – United States District Court – Western District of Louisiana – March 18th, 2016 – In this products liability case, the plaintiffs filed suit under the e Louisiana Products Liability Act. They allege that Defendant (Capital Safety USA) is at fault for the death of Ty Stewart, who was working as a derrickman at Savanna Energy Services. The defendants hired Gregg S. Perkins, P.E. (equipment & machinery expert witness) to opine that Stewart violated Savanna’s policies and procedures. The plaintiffs filed a motion to exclude the expert witness testimony, which was subsequently denied by the court.
- United States v Hill – United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit – March 21st, 2016 – In this case involving a bank robbery and money laundering, the Appellant appeals an order from the district court. One part of his appeal is his belief that the district court erred when it allowed the expert witness testimony of Joseph Raschke (wireless technology expert witness). The district court opined that cell-site analysis has been universally accepted as expert witness testimony and allowed the testimony. The appeals court affirmed the ruling.
- Hagan v. Jackson County – United States District Court – Southern District of Mississippi – March 21st, 2016 – This case involves a civil rights issue after the Plaintiff was arrested for possession of child pornography on his laptop. The plaintiff hired William T. Gaut, Ph.D as a police procedures expert witness and Defendants Thornton and Jackson County filed a motion to exclude this testimony. The judge granted the motion.
- Rish v. Simao – Nevada Supreme Court – March 17th, 2016 – This case involves a “low-impact” accident between two automobiles. After the accident, Simao brought suit against Rish for damages to cover the cost of injuries. At the district court level, Simao filed a motion to exclude any testimony by anyone (including Dr. David Fish, Rish’s orthopedic expert witness) stating that the crash was “low-impact”, citing a previous case in the Nevada Supreme Court (Hallmark v. Eldridge). The district court agreed with Simeo and, subsequently, opined in his favor. Rish appealed the case to the Supreme Court, which disagreed with the lower court, reversed the decision, and remanded the case for a new trial.
- Gibson v. Smithkline Beecham Corp. – United States District Court – Southern District of Mississippi – March 17th, 2016 – This is a personal injury case involving the drug Paxil. The plaintiff claims that the defendant promoted the use of the drug for women who were pregnant and hired Dr. Aaron M. Wolfson as a vocational evaluation & rehabilitation expert witness to help prove her case. The defendant sought to exclude the testimony, stating that it was incomplete, speculative, and based on insufficient evidence. In addition, the plaintiff argued that the testimony would not assist the trier of fact. The court granted the motion to exclude the testimony.
- Gross v. Balt. Aircoil Co – United States District Court – Southern District of Mississippi – March 17th, 2016 – This is a personal injury case in which a couple allegedly contracted Legionnaire’s disease while staying at a hotel. They argue that this was caused by a defective water-cooling tower at the hotel and filed sued against numerous companies related to the tower. In order to prove their case, they hired Robert Cunningham, a water/sewage treatment engineering expert witness. The defendants moved to exclude a portion of Cunningham’s testimony, specifically his opinion that a representative of NCH Corporation (which provided water treatment services to the tower at the hotel) acted reasonably when he recommended one water treatment chemical for the tower. The court denied the motion to exclude.
Appellant appeals an order convicting him of first degree murder stating that, among other issues, the district court erred when it excluded his expert witness. The Nebraska Supreme Court affirmed the district court opinion.
Plaintiffs sued for unlawful dumping of toxic industrial waste in the Dominican Republic. 19 combined Daubert motions have been filed by the parties. Two of them have been decided recently.