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Jenkins v. General Motors Corp.

United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
446 F.2d 377 (1971)


Facts

Ione Jenkins (plaintiff) was riding in a car manufactured by General Motors Corporation (GM) (defendant) when the car spontaneously swerved off the road. Jenkins was paralyzed as a result. Jenkins sued GM for negligence, alleging a failure during the manufacturing process to tighten and adequately inspect a nut in the car’s suspension. Jenkins and the driver of the car testified that the car had suddenly become uncontrollable for no apparent reason. A police officer who investigated the scene testified that there was no evidence of speeding, intoxication, or reckless driving. GM argued that Jenkins’s theory was speculative and that the damage to the suspension was the result, rather than the cause, of the accident. GM presented evidence of its quality-care procedures in the manufacturing of the car. The jury found in favor of Jenkins and awarded her $425,000. GM appealed, arguing that the case should not have been submitted to a jury.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Ingraham, J.)

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