Sutter O’Connell Wins Unanimous Defense Verdict in Stark County, Ohio

Posted on August 20th, 2014 by sutteroconnell

On August 19, 2014, a unanimous 8-member jury in the Stark County Court of Common Pleas found in favor of the Defendant-manufacturer in an Ohio Lemon Law/Breach of Express Warranty action.

The case arose out of Plaintiff Terry Bowman’s purchase of a new 2011 Jeep Wrangler. After driving the vehicle for 10 months and approximately 10,000 miles, Mr. Bowman took his vehicle to an authorized dealership for service, complaining of abnormal noises. Mr. Bowman alleged the noise was the result of a defective rear differential or other driveline component, and that failure to properly repair the vehicle’s driveline would result in a catastrophic failure.

On behalf of the Defendant, evidence and testimony was presented that Mr. Bowman’s vehicle was mechanically and structurally sound, and had operated as designed since the date of purchase. Mr. Bowman’s vehicle was subjected to numerous test drives, side-by-side vehicle comparison, chassis ear examination and magnetic testing of fluid from the vehicle’s driveline components. In the end, absolutely no evidence of an abnormality could be found. The noise of which Mr. Bowman complained was actually due to the normal wear of his vehicle’s aggressive tire treads when driving on pavement and not a defect in the driveline components. Finally, any noise Mr. Bowman experienced did not impact the use, value or safety of the vehicle. He continued to drive the vehicle on a daily basis and had accumulated over 40,000 miles since its purchase.

After two days of evidence and testimony, the jury deliberated for approximately 2 hours before returning a verdict on all counts in favor of the manufacturer. Mr. Bowman was represented by David Tannehill from Krohn & Moss, seeking a repurchase of the vehicle in addition to attorney’s fees and costs. Attorneys Kevin Kita and Tiffany Allison of Sutter O’Connell Co. represented Chrysler Group LLC.