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Claypoole v. Motor Finance Corp.

Decided: October 10, 1940.

FRANK H. CLAYPOOLE, PLAINTIFF-RESPONDENT,
v.
MOTOR FINANCE CORPORATION ET AL., DEFENDANTS-APPELLANTS; PEARL CLAYPOOLE, PLAINTIFF-RESPONDENT, V. MOTOR FINANCE CORPORATION ET AL., DEFENDANTS-APPELLANTS



On appeals from judgments of the Supreme Court.

For the defendants-appellants, Robert Peacock.

For the plaintiffs-respondents, James Mercer Davis.

PER CURIAM.

These are appeals from judgments of the Supreme Court in favor of the plaintiffs, entered upon verdicts of a jury after a trial at the Burlington Circuit. The suits arose out of an automobile accident on route 25 near New Brunswick. Plaintiffs,

Frank L. Claypoole and Pearl, his wife, were riding in an automobile, owned and driven by the husband, in the direction of Trenton. The car driven by the defendant Robbins and owned by the defendant Motor Finance Corporation was proceeding in the opposite direction. The road at the point in question is a four-lane highway. Each car was traveling in the lane on its side nearer the center line of the road. They came into collision, each driver contending that the other had crossed the center line of the road. Defendants' version was that plaintiff's car struck a paint barrel placed on the road in connection with some painting being done by State Highway Department employes and was thus forced to the wrong side of the road. Plaintiff denied striking a barrel and testified that the defendants' car, in attempting to pass a truck, came over to the wrong side of the road and caused the collision.

There is a notice of appeal in each case and they contain grounds of appeal. Appellants have also filed "reasons" which seem to be relied upon as grounds of appeal.

Reasons 1 and 2 are to the effect that the verdicts were contrary to the weight of the evidence and were excessive. These grounds bring up no legal questions which are cognizable in this court on appeal. Ratz v. Hillside Bus Owners' Association, 103 N.J.L. 502.

Reason 3 is that the court admitted illegal testimony over objection of defendants. However, the questions and answers complained of are not set out at length. Grounds of appeal which merely allege error generally in the admission or rejection of evidence will not be considered. Burgess v. Noteboon, 100 N.J.L. 116.

Reason 4 is that the court allowed the plaintiffs to re-open their case after closing and after a motion had been made by counsel for the defendants. This was a matter resting within the sound discretion of the trial judge and we see no abuse of that discretion.

Reasons 5 and 6 are to the effect that it was error to refuse a motion for nonsuit and a motion for the direction of a verdict. A reading of the record persuades us that there was a dispute of fact in the evidence as to the manner of the

happening of the accident which required submission of the case to the jury. Each side produced evidence from which it could be found that the driver of the other car had crossed the center line of the road and caused the accident. This was a disputed question ...


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