Law School Case Brief
Griswold v. Conn. Co. - 131 Conn. 248, 38 A.2d 676 (1944)
Where a plaintiff claims that the negligence of two or more defendants is the proximate cause of the injuries suffered, one defendant cannot complain because the charge was too favorable to another defendant, since, if both are liable, they are liable jointly and severally.
The plaintiff was injured because of the sudden stopping of a Connecticut Company bus which he had boarded at the Hartford Railroad Station. The bus was stopped by its operator shortly after leaving the station to avoid a collision with a car belonging to the defendant Diamond Ginger Ale Company and driven by the defendant Weir when it made a right turn into Spruce Street in front of the bus. The jury found in favor of the Connecticut Company and against the soda company and the employee only, as joint tortfeasors, based on answers to interrogatories that showed that the jury found that the victim's injuries were due solely to the negligence of the employee. On appeal, the soda company and employee claimed that the charge on the effect of an emergency was not sufficiently explicit and that it favored the bus company.
Did the court properly rule in favor of plaintiff?
The court affirmed the trial court's judgment in favor of the victim and bus company and against the soda company and its employee as joint tortfeasors. The court affirmed and held that the soda company and employee would not be heard to complain that the charge was too favorable to the bus company where, if it had been found liable along with the soda company and employee, they would have been jointly and severally liable. Further, the charge as a whole described the general situation to the jury and their answers to the five interrogatories were consistent and showed good comprehension of the issues.
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