Rice Family Wins Key Rulings In Civil Case Against Corasanti

6:40 PM, Sep 17, 2013   |    comments
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Buffalo, N.Y. - The judge in the wrongful death case against Dr. James Corasanti has made a number of key pre-trial rulings in the case in favor of Alix Rice's family.

Last week, attorneys for Corasanti and Rice's family were in state supreme court arguing over what areas Corasanti can be sued for at his upcoming civil trial.

Corasanti's attorneys tried to have each possible claim eliminated.

They said the Rice family should not be able to sue for any pain and suffering Alix experienced, claiming that Alix died instantaneously.

Nor they said should Corasanti be sued for any "pre-impact terror" Alix may have experienced, saying Alix did not know she was about to be struck by Corasanti's car.

They also argued that Corasanti should not be sued for punitive damages.

But a judge has ruled against Corasanti in all three areas, meaning a jury will now be able to consider all three claims at his civil trial.

The claim that could result in the largest part of a jury award against Corasanti is for punitive damages.

The law says punitive damages are awarded for "conduct that demonstrates an indifference to, or a reckless disregard of, the health, safety or rights of others."

Rice's family says Corasanti's actions on the night Alix was killed do indeed rise to that level.

Terry Connors, Rice Family Attorney: "Just on that very evening alone, the conduct of driving while intoxicated, speeding, driving in the wrong lane, texting while driving, all of those actions, all of those items of his conduct are such as to warrant punitive damages."

The judge also ruled that the defense can have access to some of Alix's medical records.

It's not known at this point whether either side will appeal any of the judge's rulings.

The start of a trial in the case is still at least a few months away.








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