Sample Car Accident Defendant's Deposition Part 4

A. So, I guess --you know. So, I guess a lane --what's a lane, about eight feet wide I guess, something like that.
Q. Well, I'm --actually we know exactly what it is because the police measured it there.
A. I don't know.
Q. And it's 20 feet. The westbound lane is 20 feet, 3 inches wide.
A. Okay.
Q. And your vehicle is about six feet wide. How close were you passing to those parked cars?
A. I was a good distance away, sir. I was closer --I was close to the center line.
Q. How about the car in front of you?
A. Close to the center line. I was behind the car. I was approximately 12 inches from the center line.
Q. So, you were about a foot from the center line. Your vehicle was about six feet wide, that's seven feet. And it's a 20-foot wide roadway. What's your --what do you think? I understand you didn't see Mr. Frederick. Where do you think he was?
A. I don't know, sir. I don't know. You're asking me for speculation, and I --I don't know. I don't know because I didn't see him.
Q. No, I understand. But since then, I'm sure you've thought about what happened.
A. Are you --are you -
MR. HUNTER: Let him finish his question.
Q. I'm asking: Did you come to some, you know, idea of --in your own mind, just what you thought yourself? You know, I know you didn't see him, but did you come to in your own mind in trying to piece together what happened where he must have been?
MR. HUNTER: Objection. Go ahead, sir.
A. Are you asking --are you asking me to speculate as to what I think may have occurred?
Q. Yes, sir.
MR. HUNTER: Well, objection. I'm not sure I want you to speculate, but to keep things moving
MR. FIORE: I appreciate that.
MR. HUNTER: --go ahead, sir.
Q. I'm saying in your own mind, you know, obviously you had contact with Mr. Frederick. He's dead. You were there. He was there. I know you didn't see him. But since that time, I'm sure you've replayed it in your mind. Did you come to some idea or hypothesis as to where he had to have been?
MR. HUNTER: Objection. Go ahead, you can answer, sir.
A. Again --so, you're asking me to speculate, and --and I don't feel comfortable speculating about what was in somebody else's mind or what somebody else was trying to do at a particular point in time. It's an unfortunate accident that occurred. I feel sorry for the family. I don't want to try to --to try to think about where a 79-year old frail man may have been on a dark night trying to cross the street. I --I think in my own mind that for a moment there for whatever reason, he wasn't paying attention and he stepped away from a safe zone wherever he --what he thought was a safe zone. And he stepped out into traffic. And he --unfortunately when he did so, he touched a moving vehicle and he was injured. And the injury proved fatal. By the grace of God, it wasn't --you know, that's what happened. I --I can't speculate where he --I don't know if he was next to his car. I don't know if he was in the middle of the roadway. I don't know if he was --if he had stand behind his car and he started to walk out. You know, you have to ask the police. I don't know.
MR. HUNTER: That's fine.
Q. Mr. Manning, we're back on the record. You understand when we took the brief break, I showed you a photograph. It's now marked as Exhibit No. 2 on the back, and the photograph is down next to you. It's a photograph taken by, we believe, the police on the night of the --the night of the occurrence, and you have a pointer there. You had told us when you came up from the light at River and you came up toward Princeton Court, you could see cars parked on the right side of the road. There may have been some even before Princeton Court, but there certainly was some after Princeton Court. Do you see in Exhibit 2 any of the cars that you did see westbound Main Avenue approaching Princeton Court?
A. I know that this car --I know that there was cars there, sir. I --as I approached, I was driving. I can't --I can't identify these --the cars per se by model and features when --from the 8 question that you're asking. Because I wasn't looking at the model and feature of the cars. I saw 10 cars parked.
11 Q. Right. But do you remember now looking at photograph Exhibit No. 2, the parked cars that are shown there, do you remember now seeing any of those parked cars as you were driving up?
A. You're asking me a different --you're asking me a question, sir, which I just answered. I can't answer as I was driving up if those were the 11:47:40 cars that were parked at that --as I --as I approached. I remember --I know there were cars on the right side of the road.
Q. Okay.
A. Now --go ahead.
Q. You said you --in your testimony, you recall seeing a dark colored car. Is that the car that's shown closest in the photograph?
A. That's the car that's shown closest in the photograph that I know was there. Because after the accident and I walked back, I observed what appeared --what --an SUV.
Q. Okay. Can you point to that car -
A. (Complies.)
Q. --on Exhibit 2? And you're pointing to it.
A. Uh-huh. And the car in --there was a car in front of that. There were two --there were cars parked there because I had to park further up the street and then walk back.
Q. Okay. Is your car shown in Exhibit 2?
A. I can't identify positively, but it appears that my --that the car I was driving is at the --the farthest one that's parked pointed inward towards the curb, but not all the way into the curb.
Q. Okay, thank you. We're done with the exhibit. Thank you, sir. You had told us that there was at least one car in front of you, possibly two or three as a matter of fact. You don't contend that any of those cars struck Mr. Frederick; do you?
A. I'm not prepared to say whether those cars did or did not. They did not appear to strike anyone. I heard a thudding --a thud, a noise, a thud against the right side of my car. I --those cars continued to drive. I can't answer.
Q. All right. Would you agree with me that those cars ahead of you, whether it was one, two or three, but it was definitely at least one, that those cars ahead of you had to have passed Mr. Frederick before you struck him?
MR. HUNTER: Objection. Go ahead, sir, you can answer.
A. Well, I have --you're using terms here saying that I struck him. And I don't know that I struck him. I heard a noise against the side of my car. Something hitting against the side of my car indicates that something struck me.

Q. You're not --you don't for a minute think as you sit here that you're not the person that struck Mr. Frederick; are you?
MR. HUNTER: Objection. Go ahead.
A. I object, sir, to that question. Because as I said before, I heard a noise against the side of my car. Not in the front of my car. Against the side. And as such, it appeared --and as I said earlier that it appeared that something hit the side of my vehicle. I can't answer how it --how that occurred, but that's what I heard.
Q. Okay. And do you have any doubt in your mind that what you heard was you striking Mr. Frederick?
MR. HUNTER: Objection.
A. Again, sir -
MR. HUNTER: I think, counsel, just --I think he's respectfully quarreling with the characterization of striking. I think if --if maybe we can finalize this area just in --his vehicle contacted –had contact with Mr. Frederick.
Q. Is that --is that what the issue is, the word struck as opposed to came into contact? Let me
ask it this way, sir: You don't contend as we sit here today that you did not come in contact with Mr. Frederick. You agree that your vehicle came in contact with Mr. Frederick; correct?
A. I agree that --I would state that Mr. Frederick came in contact with my vehicle.
Q. Okay. And Mr. Frederick did not come in contact with the one, two or three vehicles that
passed -
A. Not to my-
Q. --directly before you passed the point?
A. Not to my knowledge, sir. It could --it could have been. I was behind the vehicle in front of me. I don't know if he hit --if he glanced that car and was thrown back. I don't know what happened. All I know is that I heard a thud against the side, the passenger side of my vehicle, but
where the door is, where the passenger door is.
Q. Have you seen anything in the police investigation that indicates that anyone other than
you came into contact with Mr. Frederick?
A. I have not reviewed the police report.
Q. If that report doesn't say anything about any possibility of anyone other than you contacting Mr. Frederick, would you agree that it is most probably the case that you were the only one that came in contact with Mr. Frederick?
A. On the prima facie, I would agree with the police report.
Q. Okay. And, so, from your testimony today, up to three vehicles had to have passed Mr. Frederick before you came in contact with him. Do you agree?
MR. HUNTER: Objection. Go ahead, you can answer.
A. I know that there was one vehicle in front of me. How far a vehicle was in front of that vehicle, I don't know. Because --because when the cars were proceeding west on Main Avenue intersection, I was behind the car in front of me as I mentioned to you.
GLENN MANNING -12/15/2014
Q. Yes.
A. Whether the --whether there was a car that was in front of that car as we proceeded or not, I couldn't see. At that point typically on that street, many cars do not obey the speed limit and -
Q. Right.
A. Wait, wait. And the car could have --if there was a car in front, it could have accelerated
and moved away and –
Q. All right.
A. And as such, I don't know.
Q. Now you seem like you're very willing to speculate now.
A. No. I'm saying to you that that's what --I'm saying to you, you're asking me there are more than one car. I can only ascertain and speak to the car that was in front of me at that time.
Q. And that car that was in front of you was how far in front of you when you heard the thud?
A. Approximately one and a half car lengths.
Q. So, you would agree with me that that car had to have passed by Mr. Frederick seconds before you struck him?
A. I don't know, sir. I'm not going to try to answer that. I don't know. I don't know.
Q. Well, you agree that Mr. Frederick did not come running into the street from somewhere nor did he drop out of the sky in front of you; correct?
A. I agree he didn't drop out of the sky.
Q. Okay. And you certainly didn't see anyone --any movement in front of your car because you were scanning; correct?
A. I was looking. I didn't see anybody in front of my vehicle. And the noise --and the -what I heard was against the side of my vehicle.
Q. Do you not agree that what you're testifying to here today is very consistent with at least one car passing by a stationary person and then you striking a stationary person -
MR. HUNTER: Objection.
Q. --or coming into contact with a stationary person?
MR. HUNTER: Objection.
A. I object to that because I don't know that the gentleman was stationary. You asked me earlier -MR. HUNTER: Wait for the next question.
Q. Where was the damage on your car?
A. The damage was to the lower –
MR. HUNTER: Keep your seat still, sir.
A. --to the lower windshield on the passenger side all the way to the --towards the corner. And there was damage to the mirror of my -to the passenger side. External --the passenger side mirror, the door mirror.
Q. Did Mr. Frederick's glasses end up inside your car, eyeglasses?
A. I found the glasses in his car (sic), and glasses were returned --were turned into the police department.
Q. Found the glasses in your car?
A. Yes, sir.
Q. Had the accident not happened, what route were you going to take to get to Target?
A. I was going to proceed along Main Avenue. Main Avenue, I believe, turns into Venture Avenue. Venture Avenue goes across to Mumford Mill Road, and Mumford Mill Road would intersect with Washington Avenue would make a left turn onto Washington Avenue. I would go down Washington to Freedom Road. I would make a left turn on Freedom Road. Then I would make a right turn onto the Beltway.
Q. Is that the most expeditious route to get there?
A. That's the --that's --I felt that that would be on that evening --because I didn't expect the heavy traffic on Main Avenue, I felt that that would be the most expeditious route and would avoid
the backups that generally occur on --on the Beltway between I-83 and Reisterstown Road.

Q. Because it was rush hour?
A. Well, because of Christmas. Because of the --because of the two days before the holiday and 6:00 o'clock in the evening, I just felt that the Beltway would --I'd try to --felt that that would be the --and I wasn't --I had an hour to get there, or at least an hour. And I felt that would, you know, just be a normal drive to go.
Q. Okay. Are there any street lights in the area where the accident happened?
A. I imagine there are street lights there.
Q. Okay. But do you remember there being street lights?
A. I don't remember where they're at, sir. There's --I know there are electric lights. I know there are street lights. I don't think there was but I don't --there wasn't one to my recollection near where the accident occurred. I think there's a light closer to Sag might be close to Princeton where the cul-de-sac is, and there might be a light further up where another intersection is. But I don't recall any lights from where --from where I parked my car, where I stopped my car on the right side of the road back at least --at least to the cul-de-sac. I don't recall any lights there. Whether there is a light or not, I don't know.
Q. You've been through that area where the accident happened thousands of times over the decades that you've lived?
A. I drive through it, sir. I --that's the extent of it. I generally don't walk around there. I don't --I don't socialize too much in that area. I generally --there's a shopping center, as I mentioned before, a couple blocks further up. River Shopping Center. Sometimes I go there. And when I go there, I generally go in through the back way. So -
Q. All right. But in the years, the decades you lived where you live, how many times would you say you've passed the area where the accident happened before the crash in this case?
A. Many, many times. Many times.
Q. Hundreds of times?
A. I guess.
Q. Have you ever seen Mr. Frederick before in that vicinity?
A. No, sir.
Q. Did you ever see anyone crossing Main Avenue in the area where the accident happened in the hundreds of times that -
A. No, sir.
Q. --you've driven there?
A. No, sir.
Q. Did you ever see any people out on Main Avenue at all in the area where the accident happened any of the hundreds of times? You said there were houses there. Did you ever see people out?
A. I haven't paid attention to it, sir. I don't see many --I haven't seen --you know, I haven't seen people walk around there that much. I notice sometimes, you know, in there. I just really haven't. Sometimes I go up the other street behind Willow Glen I think it's called, and you see a lot of people walk there, you know. But I haven't --Main Avenue is a --you know, it's a busy street, and I imagine people keep to themselves. You know, they have --there's driveways, I believe, to those --to many of those homes. Generally speaking and --just generally speaking in that area, I don't see many people walking the streets. I see a jogger now and then on the pavement. That's about it. It's not, you know --doesn't seem to be an area where you see people walking around the streets a lot or gathering out on the street. It's
a quiet residential --you used the word residential. As far as pedestrians are concerned, I don't see many. I know it's a lot of traffic. I know it's a very busy boulevard, if you will.
MR. HUNTER: You've answered the question, sir.
Q. When you have done your driver improvement programs and you're counselling people there, what do you tell them to be careful of when they're driving a car and they see cars parked on the right side of the road?
MR. HUNTER: Objection. Go ahead, you can answer, sir.
A. Be careful of a person opening a car door. Watch for --watch for car doors opening. Watch for people getting out of cars. Be careful of children. Look for children on the sidewalk because a child could unexpectedly run in the street. So forth.
Q. Where all those admonitions in your own mind on this fatal night as you came up –
A. Yes, sir.
Q. --westbound Main Avenue and saw the parked cars?
A. Yes, sir.
Q. So, did you make special note of -
A. I always -
MR. HUNTER: Wait. Let him finish the question, sir.
Q. Did you make special note of the cars that you saw parked to your right as you approached the area where the accident happened?
A. Again, I noticed that the cars were parked there. I don't necessarily have to make special note of the particular car. I make note of the car, that there are cars. And I try to be alert for unexpected contingencies.
Q. Such as?
A. Such as a --such as a person walking out from their cars. Such as a person opening a car door. As you mentioned, it's a two-lane traffic,and I stay close to the center lane because someone --someone could open their car door and, you know, a serious accident could occur.
Q. So, do you agree then that on that evening, you must not have seen someone who was there to be seen?
MR. HUNTER: Objection. This is asked and answered a couple times, but go ahead, sir.
Q. Would you agree you had to have just missed seeing someone who was there to be seen?
A. As I mentioned to you, sir
MR. HUNTER: Objection. Go ahead.
A. As I said before, sir, I'm not --I heard a thud against the side of the car. You can categorize it in any way that you want, but that's what happened.
Q. Okay. Well, how would you categorize it?
A. I was alert. I was looking. I was trying to drive carefully. I was driving carefully. I was within the speed limit. I was observant. A gentleman --apparently something happened that involved a human being, a person who was wearing or was clothed in garments that were not visible. That
were --that was difficult to see. That blended in on a dark night in heavy traffic. Now, where he came from --he didn't drop from the sky as you said. Where he was exactly and what he did exactly calls for speculation, and I can't answer that, sir. I'm not trying to be obstinate. I just –
Q. But you do agree with me that at least one car had to have passed Ms. Frederick before you came in contact with him?
MR. HUNTER: Objection. Asked and answered. Go ahead, sir.
Q. There would be no other way -
A. I answered --you asked the question, and I answered it already, sir.
Q. What was the answer?
MR. HUNTER: Objection. Asked and answered. Go ahead, sir.
A. I said that there was a car in front of me. Whether that car --what contact or lack of contact that car had with Mr. Frederick, I don't know. Whether Mr. --whether that car was close to Mr. Frederick and Mr. Frederick moved out of the way of that car and he by so moving put himself in peril, I don't know. You asked me this before. You asked for speculation. I can't answer that answer because I don't know.
MR. FIORE: Okay. Can we go off the record for a minute?
THE VIDEOGRAPHER: Going off the record as of 12:06 p.m. (Whereupon a brief recess was taken, after which the following was heard:
THE VIDEOGRAPHER: Back on the record. The time is now 12:08 p.m.
Q. Mr. Manning, when is the last time you've been through that intersection where the --that area where the accident happened? Did you go by there today?
A. No, not today.
Q. When is the last time you went by there?
A. It's been a week, about a week or so. I tell the truth, I try to avoid it now. I go up Willow Glen or I go --I go straight up Rogers Road and go around the other way to go up or whatever. I --I try to avoid it.
Q. I had asked you before if you had had any counselling yourself for this, and you had said no. You told us what you did for a living. Did --have you ever been treated for any drug or alcohol abuse?
A. No, sir.
MR. FIORE: Okay. That's all the questions I have, sir. Thank you.
MR. HUNTER: We'll read and sign, please.
THE VIDEOGRAPHER: This is the end of the deposition. We will go off the record as of 12:09 p.m. (Whereupon at 12:09 the deposition concluded.)

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