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Automotive Mechanic Expert Witness

Provides Opinion & Testimony In:

Automotive, Automotive Design, General Automotive, Custom Car, Car Restoration, Automotive Patent Infringement, Automotive Product Liability, Automotive Mechanical Defect, Automotive Modification

EXPERT WITNESS 5042

California

EDUCATION / CERTIFICATIONS

California State University, Northridge, CA-1994
Bachelor of Arts, in Three-Dimensional design, took course in Industrial Design specialized in Transportation Design Built prototypes from a variety of materials by hand from design drawings and blueprints.

Platt College, Eagle Rock, CA-1989
Diploma, in Graphic Arts. Studied drawing, type setting, cut and paste, 2D layout work for print

Santa Monica College, Santa Monica, CA-1985
Associate of Arts, in Communications. Studied writing, debate, plus personal interest courses
In arc and gas welding, custom body modification, flared fenders, built hood scoops, and built a rear spoiler from scratch. Prepping and Painting cars.

Santa Monica High School, Santa Monica, CA-1978
Diploma, Automotive Repair major, spent 3 years in the Automotive department, learned, Engine rebuilding, electrical, brakes and suspension, transmission rebuild, air conditioning, service, cooling system repair, and general automotive repair.

Awards (for cars I have built)

  • Eagle 1 Excellence in design award Good Guys custom car show Pleasanton, CA for my ’54 Ford – 2007
  • 1st place Barris Custom Car show show my custom ’54 Ford, Culver City, CA-2007
  • 1st place in its class Grand National Roadster show my custom ’54 Ford, Pomona, CA-2006
  • Invite and win Blackie’s Fresno Autorama for my custom ’54 Ford, Fresno, CA-2006
  • Best of Show Barris Custom Car show my custom ’54 Ford, Culver City, CA-2006
  • My ’54 Ford that I designed and built won 15 more 1st place trophies from-2006-2008
  • 1st place in its class, LASAAC car show my ’66 Shelby replica. Santa Monica, CA-2001-2009
  • Best Mustang Barris Custom Car show my 66 Shelby replica, Culver City, CA-2005
  • 1st place Street Machine Nationals for my ’69 El Camino, Devonshire Downs, CA-1980
  • PAW Award for automotive repair excellence, Santa Monica, CA-1978

Related Experience

  • I am an Automotive Expert Witness with over ten years’ experience in the industry
  • I’m a former professional mechanic worked while still in high school into college, doing general repair, diagnostics, motor rebuilds, valve jobs, carburetor rebuilds, tune ups, brakes, suspension and cooling system repair, including rebuilding radiators, manual transmission rebuild work, AC service. Body repair and touch up paint work.
  • I worked in a speed shop after I graduated from High school. First as a parts installer and then a counter man selling hi performance car parts and tires.
  • I have built ten high performance Chevrolet and Ford V8 street/racing motors since I was 14 years old, for friends, myself and clients.
  • I have restored and rebuilt over eleven cars for myself and for clients starting with my first car in 1978. Taking the cars completely apart and putting them back together, over a year to three-year period on each.
  • Built an award winning custom car that won 19 trophies and was featured in several car magazines.
  • Was the designer and co- builder on a custom ’69 Camaro Station wagon which is still under construction.
  • I’ve job captained five of my client’s cars through the build process built mock ups and fabricated parts for those cars in my shop Over saw the build from fabrication to final paint.
  • I’ve been featured guest on several Automobile Related Television shows as a car designer/ fabricator.
  • I have an incredible eye for detail, noticing even the slightest modifications done to the car or variance in one design to another.
  • I have been asked to be a judge in several custom cars shows through out the years where I need to judge a car on not only look, theme, build quality and presentation.
  • I served as the Vice President for two terms and I’m one of the founding fathers of the Los Angeles Shelby American Auto Club, and I’m an expert in Shelby motor cars, as well as other collectable cars.
  • I am an expert in general Automotive as well, especially in dealing with American made cars. I have a lot of historical knowledge of the automotive industry aftermarket and original manufactures.

Prior Engagements

Bell Boyd & Lloyd, LLP, Ford Motor Company v. Keystone Automotive 2008

I was representing Keystone, I was asked by the attorneys to locate prior art for the 2005 Mustang design. of which I did locate spy photos that had been published of the Mustang concept car a year prior to the concept car was officially released for publication.

Carroll, Burdick and McDonough LLP, Allstar Tire v. Savini wheel design infringement

I was hired to locate prior art pertaining to a stainless-steel s trim ring or wheel lip that gives a one-piece aftermarket alloy wheel the look of a more expensive two-piece wheel. Allstar’s claim was that they held an exclusive patent of the c shape of their lip, and the method of attachment. I found prior art and wrote an historical report to show that this method of dressing up automotive road wheels dated clear back to the 40’s and became prominent in the ‘60’s. I was informed by the attorney that patent claim was ruled invalid.

Carroll Shelby Wheel Company, v. Ford Motor Company, wheel design infringement 2014

This was a pre-litigation case where the potential plaintiff came to me prior to deciding whether or not to file a lawsuit against Ford motor company revolving around the similarities between one of their aftermarket wheels and Ford OEM Boss 302-wheel design. I did a pictorial report for them siting the similarities and differences between the two wheels and based on my report they decided to drop the matter.

Warner, Sechrest & Butts, P. A., James Fender v. Lexani Wheel, Product liability 2015

This was a case where an aftermarket wheel that was improperly mounted dismounted from the car at speed and killed one person and injured another. I had to read through the police reports and determine whether the manufacture should have some type of warning label on the rims to warn people of the danger of improper mounting of a wheel. (Was deposed on this case) Settled out of court

Galloway, Johnson, Tompkins, Burr & Smith., Kareem Sobky v. Precision Restorations, LLC Noncompliance case 2016.

This is case involve a classic car owner suing the restoration shop for inferior work and for work he was s charged for but doesn’t believe was done.
I was working for the defendant and had to inspect the car and write a report on the quality and the total amount of work done in relationship to what the owner of the vehicle was charged. Case was settled out of court

Cole, Scott, & Kissane, PA., Sandquist v. Woodward Product Liability Case 2016.

This is a continuation of a case where an aftermarket wheel that was improperly mounted dismounted from the car at speed and killed one person and injured another. The driver of the car not the car owner is being sued. I have been retained to show that though he was the mechanic hired to fix the rear tires that were rubbing he was not asked to inspect the front wheels and had no idea that the left front wheel was mounted with the incorrect wheel lugs and they were not torqued to proper specifications. I was retained, and then the defendant’s insurance ran out and the attorney dropped his case.

Orrick, Herrinton & Sutcliffe, Scat v. FCA Trademark infringement Case 2016.

In this case Scat Enterprises an aftermarket high performance part manufacture in Southern California is suing Fiat Chrysler of America (FCA) for the use of the name “Scat Pack” being used on their Dodge branded high performance cars and parts sold through their motorsport catalogs.
I was retained as an expert because of my historical knowledge of both parties, and to clarify why FCA’s use of the name causes confusion in the market place especially when some of the parts that FCA is selling under the Scat Pack name were manufactured by Scat Enterprises. (Was deposed on this case) Case is still active

Cartwright Law Firm, Ellsworth v. K1, LLC, Florida Int.Jet School Inc., OTL Italia, and Does 1 to 50 personal injury Case 2017.

In this case Mrs., Linda Ellsworth was driving an electric OTL go kart at a K1 indoor go kart track, when a go kart in front of her spun out and ended up sideways 90 degrees to her path of travel and the go kart she was driving hit the stopped kart and was catapulted up and over the stopped go kart injuring her. (Was deposed on this case) Case was settled out of court defendant paid undisclosed amount to my client.

US Department of Justice, several; US v. Defendant six vehicle inspections in drug smuggling cases 2015- 2017.

Asked to inspect vehicles used in drug smuggling, to evaluate how the cars were modified, how much time it would have taken to do the modifications and write reports on my findings.

Law Office of Robin L. Unander, R&R Motor works v. Dean Ventura, LLC

This is case involve a classic car owner suing the restoration shop for inferior work and for work he was s charged for but doesn’t believe was done.
I was working for the defendant and had to inspect the car and write a report on the quality and the total amount of work done in relationship to what the owner of the vehicle was charged.
(I have been deposed and testified twice in this case)

Harmony Law, LLC, Greg Thorlaksen v. Jim Verhey, Reincarnation Auto,
Noncompliance case 2018.

This is case involve a classic car owner suing the restoration shop for inferior work and for work he was s charged for but doesn’t believe was done.
I am working for the plaintiff and had to inspect the car and write a report on the quality and the total amount of work done in relationship to what the owner of the vehicle was charged.

Oakes Law Office, Ford Motor Company v. New World Industries 2018
Patent infringement case

I was representing NWI, I was asked by the attorney review patent drawings and determine indefiniteness of the patent drawings and then do a comparative study of the patent drawings to the commercial embodiments in a patent infringement case involving 2005 Mustang and 2004 F 150 pick- up replacement parts was deposed and went to trial in federal court, this was a Federal Trade Commission case.

Law Offices of Marshall Silberberg, Powers v. Goodyear 2018-2019
Service liability case

I was asked to inspect a car that was serviced at a Goodyear Service center that loss control of the steering which caused the car to have to come to a stop suddenly on a dark freeway, in turn causing another driver to swerve violently and flip the truck injuring the driver. I inspected the car and found the cause for the cars loss of steering which was the result of incompetent work perform by Goodyear. (Active Case).

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