51 A.2d 535 (Md. 1947), 25, Nance v. Gall

Docket Nº:25.
Citation:51 A.2d 535, 187 Md. 656
Opinion Judge:[187 Md. 674]GRASON, Judge.
Party Name:NANCE et al. v. GALL.
Judge Panel:[187 Md. 659]Before MARBURY, C.J., and DELAPLAINE, COLLINS, GRASON, HENDERSON, and MARKELL, JJ.
Case Date:March 13, 1947
Court:Court of Appeals of Maryland
 
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Page 535

51 A.2d 535 (Md. 1947)

187 Md. 656

NANCE et al.

v.

GALL.

No. 25.

Court of Appeals of Maryland

March 13, 1947

Motion for modification of opinion.

Opinion modified.

For prior opinion, see 50 A.2d 120.

[187 Md. 659]Before MARBURY, C.J., and DELAPLAINE, COLLINS, GRASON, HENDERSON, and MARKELL, JJ.

[187 Md. 674]GRASON, Judge.

On December 12, 1946, this court rendered an opinion in this case, wherein the judgment was reversed without a new trial, as to the corporate defendant, and affirmed as to the individual defendant, Nance. He now files a motion for modification of the opinion, and the main ground for the motion is that the verdict of the jury solely reflects punitive damages, and that it would not have inflicted such punishment upon Nance if the action had been instituted solely against him; that the verdict was a joint verdict as to Nance and the railroad and was intended as a punishment not only of Nance but of the railroad, and if it stands it would, therefore, be unjust.

[187 Md. 675]The appellee answered this motion and asserts that Nance could have protected himself at the trial by offering evidence as to his financial responsibility and inasmuch as no evidence of that character was offered, there was no reason to suppose that the judgment of $8500.00, as to him, was an excessive punishment for the wrong he committed against appellee.

There was no evidence in this case that appellee sustained compensatory damages through the act complained of. The jury's verdict was purely a punitive one. It could be sustained on no other theory, because if the law required in such a case (which it does not) proof of compensatory damages, the appellee would have suffered no loss. As we pointed out in our opinion, appellee improperly joined the railroad company with Nance in this action. The verdict which the jury rendered was a joint verdict and it could not have been apportioned as to the two defendants. The question now before us is whether the judgment as to these defendants should be allowed to stand solely against Nance.

The case of Schloss v. Silverman, 172 Md. 632, 192 A. 343, 348, involved a civil action for damages resulting from an assault and battery. Silverman sued Toney Schloss and Dan Schloss, as co-partners and as individuals. The judgment in that case was reversed by this court as to Toney Schloss and as to the...

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