Jury backs Ford in Linert case

YOUNGSTOWN — After 90 minutes of deliberations, a five woman three man jury rendered a 7-1 verdict late this morning in favor of the Ford Motor Company in a lawsuit by a former Austintown police officer.

The former officer, Ross J. Linert, alleged defects in the Ford police cruiser he was driving when he was rear-ended at 115 mph by a drunk driver caused him to be badly burned.

The crash occurred at 1:08 a.m. Nov. 11, 2007, on North Meridian Road under Interstate 680.

The verdict ended a two-week trial over which visiting Judge Thomas P. Curran presided in Mahoning County Common Pleas Court.