Mr. Perry Ellis, the plaintiff and Mr. Ronald Pollard were neighbors in Beaufort, North Carolina. They were arguing over a woman, who lived in the same neighborhood as they. Mr. Pollard was dating the woman at the time of the incident. Mr. Ellis and Mr. Pollard exchanged words and Mr. Ellis was punched in the nose. He sustained a nose fracture that required surgery and he filed criminal charges against Mr. Pollard, but the charges were dismissed.
Mr. Ellis alleged that he was assaulted and battered by Mr. Pollard. The female in question, who was now dating Mr. Ellis at the time of the trial, testified that the defendant hit the plaintiff without provocation. Mr. Ellis sought punitive damages based on Mr. Pollard’s alleged conscious disregard for the safety of others. Mr. Ellis also argued that his need for surgery following the incident was directly related to Mr. Pollard’s actions.
Mr. Pollard said that Mr. Ellis came into his yard and actively engaged in a physical altercation. Mr. Pollard argued that Mr. Ellis knew he was not welcome on his property but he entered his yard anyway. Mr. Pollard claimed that Mr. Ellis’ breathing problems and deviated septum preexisted the accident and that this incident did not cause his need for surgery.
Mr. Ellis’ alleged injuries were a fractured nose, deviated septum and breathing problems that required surgery. He recovered from his injury but sought $7,626 in medical bills, as well as damages for pain and suffering.
The verdict was $7,628 plus an additional $1,697 in prejudgment interest. The date of the verdict was on November 5, 2009.