Mandro v. Vibbert, No. 5784.

CourtUnited States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (4th Circuit)
Writing for the CourtPARKER, , and SOPER and DOBIE, Circuit
Citation170 F.2d 540
PartiesMANDRO v. VIBBERT et al.
Decision Date05 November 1948
Docket NumberNo. 5784.

170 F.2d 540 (1948)

MANDRO
v.
VIBBERT et al.

No. 5784.

United States Court of Appeals Fourth Circuit.

November 5, 1948.


170 F.2d 541

Robert Lewis Young, of Richmond, Va. (John G. May, Jr., of Richmond, Va., T. Stokeley Coleman, of Spotsylvania, Va., and Albert Rathblott, of New York City, on the brief), for appellant.

Aubrey R. Bowles, Jr., of Richmond, Va., (Bowles, Anderson & Boyd, of Richmond, Va., on the brief), for appellees.

Before PARKER, Chief Judge, and SOPER and DOBIE, Circuit Judges.

DOBIE, Circuit Judge.

This is an appeal from a verdict directed in favor of the defendants in an action wherein it was alleged that the defendants negligently caused the death of Michael Mandro, plaintiff's decedent. The facts, briefly, are these. On August 2, 1946, Mandro, driving a motorcycle, was following a car operated by Mrs. Anna Vibbert, one of the defendants and the wife of the other. Both vehicles were proceeding southward on U. S. Highway 1, near Fredericksburg, Virginia. For a distance of a mile or so and immediately prior to the accident, the motorcycle was following the Vibbert car at a distance apart of approximately 16 feet, both travelling at a speed of about 25 miles per hour. The Vibbert car, then, either slowed or stopped suddenly on the highway, whereupon Mandro's motorcycle crashed into the rear of the automobile and Mandro was fatally injured. There is conflict in the testimony on several material points, principally whether or not Mrs. Vibbert in any way signalled her intention to slow or stop as is required by statute, and whether or not Mandro was maintaining such a lookout as is required of all drivers upon the highways.

At the close of the plaintiff's case, the trial judge granted defendants' motion for a directed verdict, expressly refusing to find one way or the other on the issue of defendants' primary negligence, and basing his ruling solely on a finding that, as a matter of law, plaintiff's decedent, Mandro, was contributorily negligent. The question here presented, then, is well defined: Was this a proper case for a directed verdict on the issue of the following driver's contributory negligence?

At the outset it is well to recall the settled rule that in considering a motion for a directed verdict the evidence must be considered in its aspect most favorable

170 F.2d 542
to the party against whom the motion is made, with every fair and reasonable inference which the evidence justifies. Gunning v. Cooley, 281 U.S. 90, 94, 50 S.Ct. 231, 74 L.Ed. 720; Myers v. American Well Works, 4 Cir., 114 F.2d 252, 253, certiorari denied 313 U.S. 563, 61 S.Ct. 842, 85 L.Ed. 1522; Harris v. United States, 4 Cir., 70 F.2d 889, 890

The evidence offered by the plaintiff to establish his case was admittedly scant, consisting principally of the testimony of a Miss Bullock, the only eyewitness to the accident other than the actual participants. She testified positively that the Vibbert car came to "a sudden stop" on the highway, and that Mrs. Vibbert gave no hand signal of her intention to stop. It was Miss Bullock's testimony that tended to establish, also, the distance between the car and the motorcycle as having been about 16 feet. Her testimony is somewhat weakened when it is considered that she was some 350 feet from the collision point, and was almost directly behind the vehicles involved. However, it cannot be said that her testimony was thus so discredited that...

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7 practice notes
  • Vandergrift v. United States, Civ. A. No. 77-197-N.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 4th Circuit. United States District Court (Eastern District of Virginia)
    • March 30, 1978
    ...Inc., etc., 394 F.2d 480 (4th Cir. 1968); Nuckoles v. F. W. Woolworth Company, 372 F.2d 286, 288 (4th Cir. 1967); Mandro v. Vibbert, 170 F.2d 540 (4th Cir. 1948); Hubbard v. United States, 295 F.Supp. 524 (E.D.Va.1969); Dunkley v. Thaxton, 274 F.Supp. 723 500 F. Supp. 235 IV It is abundantl......
  • Allen v. Texas & Pacific Ry. Co., Civ. A. No. 2873.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 5th Circuit. United States District Courts. 5th Circuit. Western District of Louisiana
    • March 5, 1951
    ...aspect most favorable to the plaintiff, with every fair and reasonable inference which the evidence justifies. Mandro v. Vibbert, 4 Cir., 170 F.2d 540. This action is one in tort, under Art. 2315 of the Revised Civil Code of Louisiana. Therefore, the laws of Louisiana apply. Erie R. Co. v. ......
  • Walsh v. Commissioner of Internal Revenue, No. 13700
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (8th Circuit)
    • November 12, 1948
    ...assigned property. There was no reasonable basis, therefore, either in law or in the evidence, for ignoring the contract of the partners. 170 F.2d 540 Here the evidence supports no conclusion other than that the "partners really and truly intended to join together for the purpose of carryin......
  • Walker v. EQUITABLE LIFE ASSUR. SOC., No. 1072-D.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 7th Circuit. United States District Court of Northern District of Indiana
    • May 12, 1954
    ...party against whom the motion is made with every fair and reasonable inference which the evidence justifies. Mandro v. Vibbert, 4 Cir., 170 F.2d 540, at page The evidence when taken in its best light for the plaintiff disclosed the following pertinent facts: That Albert B. Hodges was a sale......
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7 cases
  • Vandergrift v. United States, Civ. A. No. 77-197-N.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 4th Circuit. United States District Court (Eastern District of Virginia)
    • March 30, 1978
    ...Inc., etc., 394 F.2d 480 (4th Cir. 1968); Nuckoles v. F. W. Woolworth Company, 372 F.2d 286, 288 (4th Cir. 1967); Mandro v. Vibbert, 170 F.2d 540 (4th Cir. 1948); Hubbard v. United States, 295 F.Supp. 524 (E.D.Va.1969); Dunkley v. Thaxton, 274 F.Supp. 723 500 F. Supp. 235 IV It is abundantl......
  • Allen v. Texas & Pacific Ry. Co., Civ. A. No. 2873.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 5th Circuit. United States District Courts. 5th Circuit. Western District of Louisiana
    • March 5, 1951
    ...aspect most favorable to the plaintiff, with every fair and reasonable inference which the evidence justifies. Mandro v. Vibbert, 4 Cir., 170 F.2d 540. This action is one in tort, under Art. 2315 of the Revised Civil Code of Louisiana. Therefore, the laws of Louisiana apply. Erie R. Co. v. ......
  • Walsh v. Commissioner of Internal Revenue, No. 13700
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (8th Circuit)
    • November 12, 1948
    ...assigned property. There was no reasonable basis, therefore, either in law or in the evidence, for ignoring the contract of the partners. 170 F.2d 540 Here the evidence supports no conclusion other than that the "partners really and truly intended to join together for the purpose of carryin......
  • Walker v. EQUITABLE LIFE ASSUR. SOC., No. 1072-D.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 7th Circuit. United States District Court of Northern District of Indiana
    • May 12, 1954
    ...party against whom the motion is made with every fair and reasonable inference which the evidence justifies. Mandro v. Vibbert, 4 Cir., 170 F.2d 540, at page The evidence when taken in its best light for the plaintiff disclosed the following pertinent facts: That Albert B. Hodges was a sale......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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