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ARTICLE ID 185441

$________ Negligent Supervision – Five-year-old boy injured on day care field trip to ice rink – Minor struck in eye with snowball – Loss of vision in one eye.

Osceola County, FL

This action arose when the five-year-old was struck in the eye with a snowball allegedly thrown by an employee of the defendant daycare center. The injury occurred on a field trip to an ice rink which had chipped ice into small pieces to simulate snow. The ice rink settled the plaintiff’s claims prior to trial and remained on the verdict form as a Fabre defendant.

The minor plaintiff was in the custody of the defendant daycare center and was taken on a field trip to the ice rink. While at the rink, the plaintiff alleged that one of the defendant’s supervisors formed a snowball of chipped ice and threw it at the minor plaintiff.

The plaintiff was struck in the eye by the snowball. He was diagnosed with trauma-induced macular atrophy which produced legal blindness in one eye. The plaintiff’s ophthalmological surgeon testified that the minor plaintiff will never regain his eyesight and will require future surgery to keep the eye properly in place in the socket. The plaintiff claimed that the child sustained a diminished future earning capacity as a result of his loss of vision.

The defendant argued that several individuals were throwing snowballs and it was unknown who threw the one that struck the plaintiff. The defense also contended that the Fabre defendant ice rink was at fault for making the chipped ice available to patrons and allowing them to throw it. On damages, the defendant contended that the young plaintiff had adjusted and compensated for his loss of vision, was able to play sports and was function normally.The jury found the defendant child care center ________% negligent and found that the ice rink was not negligent. The plaintiff was awarded $________ in damages. The award included $________ in past medical expenses; $________ in future medical expenses; $________ in loss of future earning capacity; $________ in past pain and suffering and $________ in future pain and suffering. A ruling on the plaintiff’s motion for additur is pending. The jury included a note with the verdict indicating a desire that the damage award to the minor plaintiff be placed “strictly into a trust fund.”

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