Court of Appeals of Illinois, First District, First Division
23 order filed August 30, 2016
23 order withdrawn October 21, 2016
from the Circuit Court of Cook County, No. 12-L-002306; the
Hon. Ronald F. Bartkowicz, Judge, presiding.
Stephen Le Brocq, of Law Offices of Stephen Le Brocq, of
Dallas, Texas, for appellant.
Farrel, of Dorn & Associates, of Chicago, for appellee.
JUSTICE SIMON delivered the judgment of the court, with
opinion. Justices Pierce and Neville concurred in the
judgment and opinion.
1 Plaintiff John Larkin filed an action for negligence
against defendant Kevin Boyd George as a result of a
multi-car accident. Defendant admitted that he drove
negligently, and the remaining issues at trial were the
nature and the extent of plaintiff's injuries and whether
those injuries were proximately caused by defendant's
negligent driving. Following a jury trial, the jury returned
a unanimous verdict in favor of defendant. Plaintiff appeals
that verdict arguing that (1) the trial court erred in ruling
that defendant did not violate the court's previous order
regarding plaintiff's motion in limine, (2) the
jury's verdict was against the manifest weight of the
evidence, and (3) the trial court failed to properly instruct
the jury to not engage in their own independent
3 On January 27, 2011, plaintiff was driving his motor
vehicle southbound on Interstate 294 near mile post 39 when
he was involved in a multi-car accident. Defendant's
vehicle contacted the rear of the vehicle driven by a
nonparty. The nonparty then contacted the rear of the vehicle
operated by plaintiff. Plaintiff's vehicle then contacted
the rear of a vehicle driven by another nonparty.
4 On March 1, 2012, plaintiff filed his complaint against
defendant alleging that he suffered numerous injuries as a
result of defendant's negligent driving. Prior to trial,
plaintiff filed a motion in limine asking the court
to bar defendant from presenting testimony and photographs
depicting damages sustained by the vehicles involved in the
underlying motor vehicle accident. The trial court limited
the use of the photographs to show the "point of
impact" and not the extent of damages.
5 At trial, investigating trooper John Oreskovich testified
that he was on the scene for at least 45 minutes
investigating the accident. He stated that his report
reflected that plaintiff made no complaints of pain or
discomfort at the accident scene. He prepared a no injury
code police report indicating that both from his personal
observations and from plaintiff's reporting there were no
complaints of pain or discomfort at the scene. Defendant
testified that, on the day of the accident, plaintiff was in
no observable pain or discomfort and that plaintiff made no
complaints to him of his left foot or ankle discomfort at the
6 Plaintiff testified that he went to an urgent care center
the day after the accident due to discomfort in his left
ankle. Approximately a month later he saw an orthopedic
surgeon who performed an ankle surgical procedure.
Subsequently, plaintiff underwent a second surgical procedure
performed by another surgeon. Plaintiff reported continuing
pain and discomfort in his left foot up until the time of
trial and testified about his inability to participate in
family activities, such as golfing, and playing ...