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In re Prempro Products Liability Litigation

October 24, 2007

IN RE: PREMPRO PRODUCTS LIABILITY LITIGATION
DONNA SCROGGIN PLAINTIFF
v.
WYETH, ET. AL. DEFENDANTS



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Wm. R. Wilson, Jr. United States District Judge

ORDER

Pending are numerous Motions in Limine filed by Plaintiff (Doc. Nos. 209, 211, 213, 215, 217, 219, 221, 223, 225, 227, 229). Defendants have responded to each motion (Doc. Nos. 301, 302).

1. Plaintiff's Motion in Limine No. 1 -- Bar References to "Lawyer-made" Lawsuits -- is GRANTED in PART and DENIED in PART. Defendant may refer to information received by Plaintiff at a particular time but can not indicate that it came from a lawyer advertisement.

2. Plaintiff's Motion in Limine No. 2 -- Bar Comment, Inference, Evidence, Testimony, or Document Attempting to Paint the Plaintiff's Attorneys in a Negative Light, Including:

A. Part 2(a) -- is unopposed and GRANTED.

B. Part 2(b)-(e) -- see my ruling on Plaintiff's Motion in Limine No. 1.

C. Part 2(f) -- is DENIED. It seems to me that Wyeth has reasonable grounds to ask specific questions along the lines covered by Plaintiff's motion and Wyeth's response.

However, Wyeth's specific questions should be limited, because this type of questioning can get out of hand.

D. Part 2(g)-(k) -- are GRANTED as to both parties.

3. Plaintiff's Motion in Limine No. 3 -- Prevent Defendants from Referencing the Discovery Process or Expense Incurred by Wyeth in Litigating this Case -- is DENIED. It appears to me that this should be subject to possible cross-examination and perhaps closing argument, depending on counsels' tactics in view of the art of cross-examination and summation.

4. Plaintiff's Motions in Limine Nos. 4 & 5 -- Exclude References to Risks of Other Drugs or Activities -- are DENIED with the caveat that Wyeth should use sound discretion in making presentations in this area.

5. Plaintiff's Motion in Limine No. 6 -- Exclude References to Clogging the System -- is unopposed and GRANTED as to both parties.

6. Plaintiff's Motion in Limine No. 7 -- Exclude Referring to Punitives As "Bonus Monies" or "Windfalls" -- Plaintiff's Motion is unopposed by Wyeth and is therefore GRANTED. But Wyeth will be permitted to appropriately describe the nature of punitive damages, if the case goes to a second stage (punitive damages). I believe that both the Eighth Circuit and Arkansas Model Jury Instructions on punitive damages say what needs to be said about this point.

7. Plaintiff's Motion in Limine No. 8 -- Exclude References to "Deep Pockets" -- is unopposed and GRANTED as to both parties.

8. Plaintiff's Motion in Limine No. 9 -- Exclude References to Failure to Call Available Witness -- is DENIED, but may be renewed before closing argument so that Wyeth can be required to put a fine point on it. In some instances it is improper to refer to non-called witnesses; but on the other hand, in some instances it is entirely proper. I assume that this issue would come up only in summation.

9. Plaintiff's Motion in Limine No. 10 -- Exclude References to Absent Witness -- is DENIED, because the issue can be better addressed during trial.

10. Plaintiff's Motion in Limine No. 11 -- Exclude References to Persons Not Sued -- is GRANTED, since ...


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