RIVERSIDE, CA. On February 17, 2017, motorcyclist Paul Terranova — represented by RiderzLaw attorneys Robert Marcereau and Sy Nazif — obtained a final verdict of $876,000 in Riverside Superior Court. Mr. Terranova, a Corona resident, was injured while lane-splitting on his Suzuki motorcycle. The Defendant, Richard Lamb, was driving a yellow Ford Thunderbird.
The accident occurred on the morning of August 12, 2014, when Mr. Terranova was commuting to work on the northbound I-15 in Corona. Mr. Terranova was lane splitting between slower-moving traffic at approximately 25 mph. According to Mr. Terranova, the defendant made a sudden lane change right in front of him and then slammed on his breaks. Mr. Terranova was unable to stop his vehicle before rear-ending the Thunderbird. Mr. Terranova was ejected from his motorcycle, flew over his handlebars, and landed on the pavement. He was treated at a local hospital and released. Mr Terranova suffered lingering injuries to his hip and back, however, and ultimately required surgery. Even after surgery, he continued to have chronic pain due to a herniated disc in his lumbar spine.
The Defendant’s lawyers disputed Mr. Terranova’s version of what happened, and claimed that the accident was Mr. Terranova’s fault because he was lane-splitting. Attorney Rob Marcereau of RiderzLaw was lead counsel for the motorcyclist. According to Mr. Marcereau, shortly before trial the defense offered $109,000 to settle the case—an amount less that Mr. Terranova’s medical bills. “The defendant’s insurance company, State Farm, thought we had a bad case because our client had a prior felony conviction, and because he was lane-splitting on a motorcycle,” Mr. Marcereau said. “State Farm told us that nobody would believe our client, and even if they did, they wouldn’t award him any money. The jury disagreed.”
After deliberating for less than an hour, the jury unanimously found that the driver of the Thunderbird was negligent. They awarded Mr. Terranova the full amount of his past and future medical bills, as well as $500,000 for pain and suffering.
“We are grateful to the men and women who served on our jury,” Mr. Marcereau stated. “They looked beyond our client’s tattoos, beyond his past mistakes, and gave him a fair trial. Justice was served.”