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GM asks judge to throw out ignition switch case over 'fabricated' key

http://www.autonews.com/article/20160822/OEM11/160829982/gm-asks-judge-to-throw-out-ignition-switch-case-over-fabricated-key

NEW YORK -- General Motors asked a Texas judge to throw out a lawsuit over a fatal 2011 crash blamed on a faulty ignition switch, accusing plaintiffs and their lawyers of fabricating evidence about the vehicle's key during the ongoing trial.

GM contends the plaintiffs "fabricated evidence ... to mislead the jury into believing that the Saturn ignition key was attached to the keychain shown (above)." Photo credit: GM court filing

According to a GM court filing, plaintiffs Zachary Stevens and his parents and their lawyers showed jurors in Harris County court a key attached to a chain containing several other items, claiming it was the one used to drive the 2007 Saturn Sky involved in the crash.

But GM said the key displayed in the courtroom did not in fact belong to that vehicle. The carmaker, which recalled 2.6 million vehicles in 2014 for defective ignition switches, has warned that added weight to key chains can cause the switches to slip out of position.

Stevens said ignition-switch rotation caused him to lose control of the Sky, hitting another vehicle and killing that driver. His 2015 lawsuit is the first to go to trial among roughly 20 pending in Texas state court.

In its filing Monday, GM said Stevens initially said he was driving with just a few items attached to his key. But the key chain shown to jurors comprised three rings holding additional items like a souvenir Eiffel Tower and gym membership card, according to the motion.

GM said plaintiffs "fabricated 'evidence'" to support their theory that key rotation, not Stevens' driving, caused the crash. A manslaughter charge initially brought against Stevens was dropped following GM's recall announcement.

The company asked the judge to either dismiss the case altogether, or to inform jurors about the allegedly false statements with instructions to disregard them.

The alleged misstatements "have hamstrung the search for the truth," GM wrote.

Lawyers for Stevens were not immediately available for comment Monday. GM declined to comment.

Earlier this year, a judge overseeing federal switch litigation dismissed the first of those cases to go to trial. The only switch case to reach a jury resulted in a verdict absolving GM of liability for a 2014 crash in New Orleans.

GM has paid roughly $2 billion in criminal and civil penalties and settlements in connection with the switch.

Another switch trial is set to begin Sept. 12 in U.S. District Court in Manhattan.
 

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If this is the case I am thinking of, it was raining and he was passing on the right shoulder.
 

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Concerning the case in the above post, It looks to me like this was not a head on collision, judging by the photo of the Sky he was side ways when the truck impacted the Saturn Sky, a frontal airbag will not deploy in this type of a crash because negative g's were all to the right side of the vehicle. I hope GM didn't pay him anything because this scum bag was the one that caused the accident by speeding and wreckless driving.
 

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Title thread had me puzzled. Are we only supposed to use keys from a natural birth as opposed to "fabrication"?

The whole situation reminds me of a story I read about 36 years ago when I started my "life" as an engineer. When U.S. colleges graduate 3 lawyers for every engineer, there are going to be a lot of ambulance chasers out there.
 

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It wasn't wreckless, there was indeed a wreck!
LOL!

No one knows how to spell any more - usually just rely on spellcheckers which are often unable to discern context.
 

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While the headline referred to a fabricated key, it was actually evidence that was fabricated.
Ah, but it was key evidence! 😇
 
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