Whether defendants are entitled to a new trial because:
the trial court erred in failing to give effect to Choate’s binding judicial
admission that he appreciated that jumping on a moving train was dangerous, while at the
same time permitting Choate to suggest that his idiosyncratic vulnerabilities (e.g., his
allegedly below-average intelligence) prevented him from appreciating that danger;
companions that they recognized that jumping onto a moving train was dangerous, while
at the same time allowing Choate to introduce evidence that other people—with whom he
never had any contact—had attempted to jump on moving trains; and/or
the trial court erred in allowing Choate’s expert witness, a civil
engineer, to offer conclusions that lacked a factual foundation and to opine on issues
outside the scope of his expertise, such as adolescent behavior and law enforcement.
the trial court erred in allowing Choate to cross-examine defendants’
engineering expert using a photograph for which no foundation was ever established.
5. Whether defendants are entitled to a new trial because the verdict was against
the manifest weight of the evidence.
This Court has jurisdiction under Supreme Court Rules 301 and 303. The trial
court entered judgment on the jury verdict on July 14, 2009. A1. Defendants filed timely
post-trial motions, which the trial court denied on December 18, 2009. A3. Defendants
filed a timely notice of appeal on January 15, 2010. A34.
STATEMENT OF FACTS
Choate lost a portion of his left leg when he slipped when trying to jump aboard a
moving train in order to “impress Alisa Van Witzenburg,” his girlfriend at the time. Tr.