Collie v. Wal-Mart Stores East, L.P.
ORDER re: MIL 46 directing that a hearing concerning prior accident shall commence immediately following jury selection & prior to opening stmts. (See order for complete details.) Signed by Chief Judge Christopher C. Conner on 5/24/17. (ki)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE MIDDLE DISTRICT OF PENNSYLVANIA
KATHLEEN ANN COLLIE,
WAL-MART STORES EAST, L.P.,
CIVIL ACTION NO. 1:16-CV-227
(Chief Judge Conner)
AND NOW, this 24th day of May, 2017, upon consideration of the motion
(Doc. 46) in limine by defendant Wal-Mart Stores East, L.P., (“Wal-Mart”), seeking
to exclude from trial evidence pertaining to a prior accident occurring in its
shopping cart facility, (id. ¶¶ 9-14), asserting that evidence of this prior accident is
irrelevant and unduly prejudicial under the Federal Rules of Evidence because
plaintiff Kathleen Ann Collie (“Collie”) has not established that the prior accident
occurred under substantially similar circumstances to the accident sub judice, (Doc.
47 at 2-4); see also FED. R. EVID. 401, 403, and the court noting that it must be
apprised of the specific facts surrounding a prior accident before determining its
evidentiary relevance or its potential to prejudice a party at trial, see Barker v.
Deere & Co., 60 F.3d 158, 162-63 (3d Cir. 1995) (citations omitted); Houdeshell ex rel.
Bordas v. Rice, 939 A.2d 981, 984-85 (Pa. Super. 2007) (citations omitted), and that
these facts must indicate that the prior accident occurred in “substantially similar”
circumstances to those of the accident at issue herein, id. (citations omitted), but
further noting that the factual record contains no exhibits or testimony describing
the circumstances of the prior accident, and that the parties presented no such
evidence to the court for purposes of adjudicating Wal-Mart’s motion (Doc. 21) for
summary judgment, (see Doc. 36), and the court concluding that the record is
inadequate to rule on the instant motion in limine at this juncture, it is hereby
ORDERED that a hearing concerning the prior accident shall commence
immediately following jury selection and prior to opening statements.
/S/ CHRISTOPHER C. CONNER
Christopher C. Conner, Chief Judge
United States District Court
Middle District of Pennsylvania
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