Kaplan v. Mashkin Freight Lines, Inc.

CourtSupreme Court of Connecticut
Writing for the CourtBefore DALY; BALDWIN
Citation72 A.L.R.2d 926,146 Conn. 327,150 A.2d 602
Parties, 72 A.L.R.2d 926 Alex KAPLAN v. MASHKIN FREIGHT LINES, INC., et al. Supreme Court of Errors of Connecticut
Decision Date15 April 1959

Page 602

150 A.2d 602
146 Conn. 327, 72 A.L.R.2d 926
Alex KAPLAN
v.
MASHKIN FREIGHT LINES, INC., et al.
Supreme Court of Errors of Connecticut.
April 15, 1959.

[146 Conn. 328]

Page 603

Adrian W. Maher, Bridgeport, with whom, on the brief, was James J. Maher, Bridgeport, for appellants (defendants).

David Goldstein, Bridgeport, with whom were John F. Lyons, So. Norwalk, Arnold J. Bai, Bridgeport, and, on the brief, Robert Fain, Bridgeport, for appellee (plaintiff).

Before [146 Conn. 327] DALY, C. J., and BALDWIN, KING, MURPHY and MELLITZ, JJ.

[146 Conn. 328] BALDWIN, Associate Justice.

The defendants in this action for negligence have appealed from a judgment entered upon a jury's verdict for the plaintiff. They assign error in the denial of their motion to set the verdict [146 Conn. 329] aside, in rulings concerning the use of medical treatises in the direct and cross examination of expert medical witnesses and the argument to the jury, and in the finding. The defendant admitted liability and the case was tried on the issue of damages only.

A summary of the finding, with certain corrections, follows: The plaintiff, who at the time of the accident was fifty-nine years old, claimed to have proved that on July 11, 1953, the defendants negligently caused his truck, which he was driving, to be overturned. His head struck the concrete pavement. He sustained contusions on his head, back, right hip and leg, and an abrasion of the left leg. He suffered a brain concussion and a strain in the right sacroiliac region. In the spring of 1954 he began to show a slight tremor of his right hand which worsened gradually. His condition was diagnosed as Parkinson's disease. This condition was caused by the injury to his head sustained on July 11, 1953. The defendant claimed to have proved that there was no causal relation between this injury and the Parkinson's disease from which the plaintiff was suffering.

The decision in this appeal turns upon the overruling by the trial court of the defendants' objection to the plaintiff's reading of extracts from medical treatises in argument to the jury. For a better understanding of the situation presented by this ruling, we shall first consider certain rulings, assigned as error, concerning the use of the medical treatises in the course of the testimony.

The plaintiff offered Dr. Clifton W. Anderson as an expert medical witness. He testified over the defendants' objection that, in his opinion, a causal relation between the plaintiff's injuries and his condition[146 Conn. 330] of Parkinson's disease was reasonably probable. The witness had previously stated that his opinion was based upon authorities which he had read and his own knowledge. The defendants' grounds of objection were, in substance, that the witness' testimony was based upon the opinion of the writers of medical treatises who were not subject to cross-examination and upon their statements, which were not in evidence. The court overruled the objection and an exception was taken. On cross-examination, the defendants offered a medical report made by the witness to the plaintiff on March 12, 1957, in which the doctor stated that he could find no causal relation between the accident and the plaintiff's disability. The report was duly received. On redirect, the witness was permitted, over objection by the defendants, to state in explanation that he had changed his opinion, as contained in his report of March 12, 1957, after he had seen the statements of two eminent neurologists, Dr. Derek E.

Page 604

Denny-Brown of Harvard Medical School and Dr. Israel S. Wechsler of Columbia University Medical School. Extracts from Cecil & Loeb, Textbook of Medicine (9th Ed.), page 1564, and Wechsler, Textbook of Clinical Neurology (7th Ed.), which contained the statements, respectively, were offered and marked as exhibits for identification. The court twice cautioned the jury that these extracts were offered in support of the witness' explanation and that their contents were not to be considered independently by the jury to prove a causal relation between the plaintiff's injury and his present condition. On recross-examination, the witness conceded that the medical textbooks had been shown to him only the day before by the plaintiff's counsel. The defendants then moved that the witness' testimony [146 Conn. 331] be stricken. The motion was denied and the defendants duly excepted. In defense, the defendants called Dr. Edwin H....

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15 cases
  • Filippelli v. Saint Mary's Hosp., 19148.
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Connecticut
    • October 13, 2015
    ...court to preclude the plaintiff from reading from a document that was not yet a full exhibit; see Kaplan v. Mashkin Freight Lines, Inc.,146 Conn. 327, 334–35, 150 A.2d 602 (1959); and to postpone admitting the article as a full exhibit until after the plaintiff had finished his cross-examin......
  • Filippelli v. Saint Mary's Hosp., 33557.
    • United States
    • Appellate Court of Connecticut
    • April 2, 2013
    ...literature he intended to bring to trial. He indicated that there was none.” The defendants cited Kaplan v. Mashkin Freight Lines, Inc., 146 Conn. 327, 150 A.2d 602 (1959), in support of their objection. On May 10, 2011, the court held a hearing regarding the defendants' objection to [61 A.......
  • City and County of Honolulu v. Bishop Trust Co., 4371
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Hawai'i
    • July 9, 1965
    ...should not be done when the exhibits have not even been admitted in evidence. 21 Cf. Kaplan v. Mashkin Freight Lines, Inc., [48 Haw. 474] 146 Conn. 327, 334-35, 150 A.2d 602, 605-606, 72 A.L.R.2d Had defendants' charts been offered in evidence, an objection might have been taken on the grou......
  • Cousins v. Nelson, 24489.
    • United States
    • Appellate Court of Connecticut
    • February 22, 2005
    ...and opinion." (Emphasis added.) C. Tait, Connecticut Evidence (3d Ed.2001) § 7.11.2, p. 539; Kaplan v. Mashkin Freight Lines, Inc., 146 Conn. 327, 330-31, 150 A.2d 602 (1959); State v. Wade, 96 Conn. 238, 250-51, 113 A. 458 (1921); see also Harlan v. Norwalk Anesthesiology, P.C., 75 Conn.Ap......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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