$24m for man left disabled after falling into hole

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

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A 66-year-old Clarendon man — who suffered 85 per cent disability to his body, including loss of or restricted sexual function, after falling into a hole while riding his bicycle home from work — was awarded $24 million in the Supreme Court, recently.

Acting Supreme Court Justice Lorna Shelly-Williams awarded Leroy Jones of Rocky Point the sum following a hearing to assess damages.

Jones' injuries included damage to an eye, loss of sensation and movement in lower limbs, loss of teeth, numerous scarring on face, incontinence of urine and stool, hypertension, neurological deficits, loss of sexual function or restricted sexual function, gross wasting of his quadriceps muscles, right ulna nerve palsy, and clonus of both lower limbs with dorsi flexion of both ankles.

The hearing was held after the attorney general admitted liability in October 2014 for the injuries Jones suffered after falling into the hole on May 26, 2008 while riding his bicycle home from the New Yarmouth Sugar Factory, where he was a distillery worker.

The hole, according to court documents, was created by PA Lawson Engineering and Construction Ltd, which is an agent of the Government.

Jones' daughter sued the company and the attorney general on behalf of her father. He was awarded general damages of $21,700,000 from April 20, 2010, the time of service of the lawsuit, to March 27, 2015 at three per cent per annum.

Special damages were also awarded in the sum of $3,306,371.76 from May 26, 2008 to March 27, 2015 at three per cent per annum.

Jones, who was also a tailor, was awarded $216,000 for handicap on the labour market.

The senior citizen was represented by Linton Gordon, Carlene McFarlane, and Pearline Bailey, who were instructed by the law firm of McLean and McFarlane. Deidre Pinnock appeared for the director of state proceedings.

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