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08/30/83 JOHN ANNIN v. BI-STATE DEVELOPMENT AGENCY

August 30, 1983

JOHN ANNIN, PLAINTIFF-RESPONDENT
v.
BI-STATE DEVELOPMENT AGENCY, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT



From the Circuit Court of the City of St. Louis; Civil Appeal; Judge Edward D. Hodge.

Before Stewart, P.j., Stephan, Crandall, JJ.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Stewart

Defendant, Bi-State Development Agency, appeals from a judgment in a jury tried case awarding plaintiff damages for personal injuries and property damage resulting from an accident between an automobile that plaintiff was operating and a bus owned and operated by Bi-State. This cause was previously dismissed because the record then before us did not show the timely filing of a motion for new trial. Leave was granted to supplement the record. The supplementary record revealed that a timely motion had been filed. The dismissal was set aside and the cause was resubmitted.

Defendant's bus that was northbound on Broadway, making a left turn into Taylor Avenue and plaintiff's southbound automobile collided in the intersection. Each claimed to have had a favorable electric traffic signal. Plaintiff contended he had a green light and defendant's driver claimed he had a green left turn arrow.

The jury found the issues in favor of plaintiff and rendered a verdict in his favor and awarded damages in the sum of $15,000.00 for personal injuries and in the sum of $3,000.00 for property damage.

Defendant presents us with 27 points relied on. We reverse for retrial on one issue.

We will first consider those issues raised by defendant that relate to the question of whether he was the real party in interest so as to be the person entitled to bring this action insofar as property damage is concerned.

On direct examination plaintiff testified that he owned the automobile that was involved in the collision. On cross-examination plaintiff testified that his father, William Annin, did not own the automobile. He also testified that the automobile was sold for salvage by "he insurance company." Defense counsel sought to show that the collision loss was paid to William Annin but was precluded from doing so upon plaintiff's objection that it would inject the consideration of insurance into the case.

Plaintiff had previously filed a motion in limine in two parts. The second portion of the motion reads as follows:

(b) That at the time of the collision plaintiff's automobile was covered by collision insurance with the Auto-Owners Insurance Company and thereafter plaintiff made a collision claim under said coverage and received payment as a result thereof, however, plaintiff had (sic) no time assigned his right of collection to said insurance company and therefore plaintiff is still the Real Party in Interest in this case.

The motion then sought to preclude defendant from using any pleading, testimony, remarks, questions or arguments that might inform the jury of such facts.

Before trial the court had overruled the motion as to part (b) set out above but during cross-examination of plaintiff it sustained part (b) of the motion. The effect of the court's action at this stage of the trial was to sustain plaintiff's objection to defendant's question respecting the matters set out in the motion.

Also related to this issue defendant offered to prove through the insurance adjuster who processed the collision claim that he handled the collision claim on the automobile; a proof of loss was signed by William Annin, plaintiff's father, in which the father claimed to be the sole owner of the automobile, except for a security interest held by a bank; that payment of the collision claim was made to William Annin, plaintiff's father; and that William Annin had signed a subrogation receipt that assigned the claim for property damage to the insurance company. The witness had copies of the documents with him which plaintiff agreed were authentic. This witness also wound testify that the named insured in the policy was William Annin and the plaintiff was listed as an additional insured. Defendant's offer of proof was denied.

Although mention was made by the parties that copies of the title were available neither ...


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