An unpublished opinion of the North Carolina Court of Appeals does not constitute controlling legal authority. Citation is disfavored, but may be permitted in accordance with the provisions of Rule 30(e)(3) of the North Carolina Rules of Appellate Proced ure.

NO. COA02-1680


Filed: 21 October 2003


         v.                        Wilson County
                                No. 01 CVS 1468

    Appeal by plaintiff in a personal injury action from judgment by Judge John B. Lewis, Jr. in Superior Court in Wilson County. Heard in the Court of Appeals 6 October 2003.

    Anderson Law Firm, by Michael J. Anderson, for plaintiff- appellant.

    Walker, Clark, Allen, Grice & Ammons, L.L.P., by Scott T. Stroud, for defendant-appellee.

    HUDSON, Judge.

    This case arises out of a crash involving the vehicles of Jessica Speight (plaintiff) and Juan Cristostomo (defendant). On 14 August 2000, at approximately 11:00 a.m., plaintiff had stopped her car in order to turn into the parking lot of the building where she worked. Plaintiff's car was hit from behind by defendant, who had failed to apply his brakes in time. Defendant was traveling approximately twenty miles per hour prior to hitting his brakes. Both plaintiff and defendant got out of their cars, inspected the damage to their cars, and exchanged information. A police officer who was called to the scene did not fill out an accident report. Both plaintiff and defendant declined the police officer's offer to call an ambulance because neither felt they had been injured.
    Plaintiff parked her car and walked into work after everyone had left the scene of the accident. Plaintiff testified that she first felt pain when she was walking into her office building. Plaintiff then called her husband, who took her to Wilson Memorial Hospital's emergency room. Although x-rays revealed no injury, plaintiff continued treatment with a number of doctors including her family physician, a chiropractor, and an orthopedic surgeon.
    Plaintiff filed a personal injury action against defendant on 31 July 2001. In his answer, defendant admitted that he was negligent, but denied that his negligence was the proximate cause of plaintiff's injuries. Plaintiff filed a motion in limine on 25 June 2002 to exclude photographs of the cars involved in the accident. Plaintiff objected to defendant's admission of photographs of the cars into evidence because she had not received copies of the photographs in discovery. The trial court denied the motion, stating that seeing pictures of the cars would be helpful to the jury. The photographs were introduced by defense counsel as exhibits during the cross-examination of plaintiff and direct examination of defendant. Plaintiff stated that the pictures fairly and accurately depicted the front, side, and rear bumper of her car after the accident.
    At the close of defendant's evidence, the parties submitted their respective requests for jury instructions. The trial court instructed the jury to first decide whether defendant's negligencewas a proximate cause of plaintiff's injuries. The court instructed the jury not to proceed to the second issue - damages - if it answered the first question “no.” After the jury returned a verdict of “no” to the first issue (plaintiff was not injured by defendant's negligence), plaintiff moved for a new trial. The trial court denied the motion. Plaintiff appeals from the trial court's denial of plaintiff's motion to exclude photographic evidence and the trial court's jury instruction regarding negligence.
    Plaintiff has not complied with the North Carolina Rules of Appellate Procedure, specifically, N.C.R. App. P. 9(a)(1)(g), 9(a)(1)(h) and 3(d). Rule 9(a)(1)(g) requires that “[t]he record on appeal in civil actions . . . shall contain . . . copies of the . . . verdict,” and Rule 9(a)(1)(h) requires that the record contain “a copy of the judgment.” Where plaintiff fails to include copies of the verdict and judgment in the record on appeal, the appeal is subject to dismissal. Abels v. Renfro Corp., 126 N.C. App. 800, 804, 486 S.E.2d 735, 738, disc. review denied, 347 N.C. 263, 493 S.E.2d 450 (1997). In addition, the notice of appeal, which does appear in the record, makes no reference to the “judgment from which appeal is taken” as required by Rule 3(d). Thus, this appeal is not properly before the Court.
    Appeal dismissed.
    Judges MCGEE and GEER concur.
    Report per Rule 30(e).

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