A Maryland state inmate named Rodney Jennings was working on a trash-removal crew on the Capitol Beltway in August 2007 when a 78,000-pound dump truck struck and killed him.
His children and estate, represented by Mallon & McCool, sued not only the truck driver but also the state of Maryland, alleging state corrections officials failed to provide adequate safety for inmates working on the roadside.
A Prince Georges County jury Thursday found Maryland and the dump truck driver, Wayne Goss, liable and awarded more than $2 million to Jennings’ children and estate. The jury, which deliberated for about two hours after the week-long trial, did not specify the damages owed by either side.
State officials testified the dump truck was overloaded and had faulty brakes, according to Mallon & McCool name partner Steven McCool, and witnesses said the truck was traveling too fast. Click here for a copy of the complaint.
Mallon, the lead trial attorney, was not immediately reached for comment today. In a statement, he called the disposition a “just verdict and fair award.” A lawyer for Goss, Budow and Noble partner Walter Gillcrist Jr. in Bethesda, was not immediately reached for comment this afternoon. McCool declined to disclose the attorneys' percentage of the jury award.