Man’s request denied for damages in wreck

A Jackson Circuit Court jury denied a rural Vallonia man’s request for damages stemming from an incident in the fall of 2013 in which his vehicle left the road and hit a Jackson County REMC utility pole.

That decision in favor of the utility and against Allen Newsome came late Thursday morning after a four-day trial.

Newsome contended in his lawsuit, filed Nov. 14, 2014, against the Brownstown-based utility that he had incurred medical expenses and permanent injuries and the loss of the vehicle and income after the Oct. 13, 2013, wreck on State Road 135, just north of the Washington County line. The amount of damages was not specified in the lawsuit, filed by Newsome’s attorney, Daniel L. Brown of Salem. Seymour’s Bradley A. Johnson also represented Newsome during the trial, while Jackson County REMC was represented by Kent M. Frandsen of Lebanon.

In the lawsuit, Newsome contended the utility had been negligent in its maintenance of its poles, which parallel State Road 135.

Newsome, who lives in Washington County but has a Vallonia address, said the wreck occurred after he fell asleep while driving home from his job at Aisin USA Mfg. Inc. in Seymour.

The 1983 Ford Bronco Newsome was driving left the east side of State Road 135 and hit the utility pole, said Indiana State Trooper Seth Davidson.

Newsome, who sustained injuries to his left leg and a possible pelvis fracture, was treated at the scene by Jackson County Emergency Medical Services personnel, taken to a nearby temporary landing zone and flown by air ambulance to IU Health Methodist Hospital.

The trial began Monday morning with the selection of six jurors and an alternate and ended early Thursday afternoon when the jury returned with the not-guilty verdict against Jackson County REMC.