Case details

Driver: Crash caused brain injury and passenger’s death





Result type

Not present

brain, brain damage, brain injury, clavicle, face, facial bone, fracture, nose, shoulder
On Oct. 23, 2011, plaintiffs’ decedent Ruben Rojas, 65, a truck driver, was a front seat passenger in a 2002 Honda Accord operated by his wife, plaintiff Mary Garcia Rojas, traveling on Merced Avenue in Kern. As they entered the intersection with Palm Avenue, their vehicle was struck by a Dodge truck and trailer operated by Gerardo Garay, who was traveling on Palm Avenue. Ruben Rojas died at the scene, while Mary Garcia Rojas sustained to her head and clavicle. Mary Garcia Rojas; her four children, Cynthia Rojas, Christina Montecino, Gabriel Rojas and Anita Rojas; and her grandson, Anita Rojas’ son, Brannon Clayton, sued Garay; HFS Enterprises Inc.; Vicente Acosta; and Vicente Trucking. Prior to trial, Acosta and Vicente Trucking settled, and HFS Enterprises was dismissed from the case. In addition, one of the plaintiffs, Clayton, was dismissed from the case. Garay admitted that he was the sole negligent driver, as he was unable to stop at the intersection’s stop sign. However, defense counsel noted that the decedent was not wearing his seat belt and that Mary Garcia Rojas failed to insure that her passengers were properly seat-belted before driving the vehicle. Thus, counsel asserted that if the decedent had been belted, he would have survived the accident and his wife would not have sustained as serious ., Ruben Rojas was not wearing his seat belt and sustained multiple traumatic in the accident. He subsequently died at the scene. The decedent is survived by his wife, four children and a grandson. The decedent’s wife, Mary Garcia Rojas, sustained blunt force trauma to her head, resulting in a brain injury and numerous facial fractures. She also sustained clavicle fractures. Thus, the decedent’s family sought recovery of wrongful death damages. Mary Garcia Rojas also sought recovery of damages for her own medical expenses and pain and suffering.
Superior Court of Kern County, Kern, CA

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