Owner of semi truck and commercial truck dealer sued after woman was allegedly run over

By Yolanda Martinez | Jul 11, 2013

NEW ORLEANS – A commercial truck dealer in Slidell is being sued by the children of a woman who was run over by an semi truck that was repaired on its premises.

William “Bill” Jones and Engelique Jones filed suit against Empire Truck Sales of Louisiana LLC, Curtis Wayne Hudspeth, Wayne Marable, Great West Casualty Company, Daimler Trucks North America LLC and KLLM Transport Services in the Orleans Parish Central District Court on May 15.

William, a resident of Orleans Parish, and his sister Engelique, a resident of the state of Indiana, filed suit as a result of the injuries suffered by their mother, Connie Marable on May 12, 2012. On that day, Connie was allegedly in a Lowe’s parking lot located in New Orleans East. The plaintiff was with Wayne Marable, who was moving items from her car into his 18-wheeler Daimler truck.  Prior to bringing his truck to the Lowe’s parking lot, Wayne had taken it to Empire Truck Sales in Slidell on April 12, 2012 with a complaint that it allegedly shifted into gear on its own.

Early in the month of May, Wayne picked up his truck and allegedly experienced the same problem again while driving. Upon Wayne’s return to Empire Truck Sales, the owner, Curtis Wayne Hudspeth, allegedly assured him that his truck was fine and that it had been properly repaired. Relying on Hudspeth’s assurance, Wayne proceeded to drive his truck to the Lowe’s parking lot.

The suit claims that Wayne’s 18-wheeler had its engine on with the emergency brake when he was moving items.  The truck then allegedly shifted itself from neutral gear into a forward gear. Connie Wayne allegedly chased after the truck, fell and was run over and dragged several feet until the truck came to a stop. The plaintiffs claim their mother suffered disabling injuries and now requires 24-hour care.

The defendant Curtis Wayne Hudspeth is accused of negligently advising Wayne by claiming that the truck was fixed before establishing reasonable safety protocols, like performing detailed re-inspections. Wayne is accused of negligently relying on assurances by Hudspeth even after the truck experienced the same problems.

The plaintiffs are seeking damages in an unspecified sum for mental and physical pain and suffering, as well as medical expenses for their mother.

The plaintiff is represented by Caleb H. Didriksen of the New Orleans-based Didriksen Law Firm LLC.

The case has been assigned to Division D Judge Lloyd J. Medley, Jr.

Case no. 2013-04560.

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