311 F.2d 201 (10th Cir. 1962), 7079, Bethel v. Thornbrough

Docket Nº:7079.
Citation:311 F.2d 201
Party Name:Avo B. BETHEL and The Aetna Casualty and Surety Company, a Connecticut corporation, Appellants, v. Herbert A. THORNBROUGH, Appellee.
Case Date:December 04, 1962
Court:United States Courts of Appeals, Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit

Page 201

311 F.2d 201 (10th Cir. 1962)

Avo B. BETHEL and The Aetna Casualty and Surety Company, a Connecticut corporation, Appellants,


Herbert A. THORNBROUGH, Appellee.

No. 7079.

United States Court of Appeals, Tenth Circuit.

December 4, 1962

Page 202

Gerald Harrison, Denver, Colo. (Tilly & Skelton and Lansford F. Butler, Denver, Colo., were with him on the brief) for appellants.

William P. Horan, Denver, Colo. (Burnett, Watson & Horan, Denver, Colo., were with him on the brief), for appellee.

Before BRATTON, BREITENSTEIN and HILL, Circuit Judges.

HILL, Circuit Judge.

This diversity action was brought in the Court below by appellants (plaintiffs) against appellee (defendant) to recover damages for personal injuries alleged to have been sustained in an automobile accident. A jury trial of the case resulted in a verdict in favor of the defendant.

The only two questions presented for our determination are whether the court below erred in instructing the jury as to a city ordinance requiring the drivers of vehicles to give a signal of their intention to stop and in permitting the personal physician of plaintiff, Avo B. Bethel, to testify at the trial over her objection on the ground of privilege.

The pertinent facts are as follows: On the day in question plaintiff Bethel, with her daughter as a passenger, was driving west on West 38th Avenue in Denver, Colorado. As she approached the intersection with Eliot Street, she met a truck traveling in the opposite direction on West 38th Avenue, which caused slush from the street to be splashed on the windshield of her car and temporarily obstructed her vision of the street ahead. Plaintiff Bethel testified that, prior to the occurrence, she had commenced to slow her car down because of the presence of two children in the vicinity of the intersection and that she did not give a hand signal to indicate to others following her that she intended to stop. Defendant was driving his car in the same direction, at this same time, and was following immediately behind the Bethel vehicle. The windshield of his car was also splashed with slush and by the time the automatic wipers had cleared the slush from the windshield, he was too close to the Bethel car to avoid a rear end collision with it. At the time of the collision, the Bethel car had come to a complete stop at the intersection.

The pre-trial order...

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