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State of Maryland v. Baltimore Transit Co.

United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
329 F.2d 738 (1964)


Facts

The State of Maryland and others (plaintiffs) sued the Baltimore Transit Company (defendant) in connection with an accident in which the company's bus struck and killed a man. Many witnesses testified during the trial. Their testimony conflicted sharply as to whether the decedent exercised due care at the time of the accident, or was contributorily negligent. The legal presumption was that the decedent acted with due care, but witnesses for the company testified that he did not. The trial judge instructed the jury that, in light of the conflicting evidence, they could not give weight to the due care presumption. The jury returned a verdict for the company, and Maryland appealed to the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Bell, J.)

Dissent (Haynsworth, J.)

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