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Jury awards $40,000 to man disfigured in fight


An Annapolis man who said he was permanently disfigured in a fight more than five years ago was awarded $40,000 yesterday by a county Circuit Court jury.

Sean D. White, now 22, was allegedly assaulted by Michael McCaughey on Nov. 26, 1986. The altercation occurred when McCaughey and several friends went to the White home that evening in search of a party.

The jury awarded $3,642 to White's brother, Thomas J. White, who was involved in the fight.

According to court testimony, several teen-agers, including McCaughey, parked on the front lawn of the White home in the first block of Bay Drive in Bay Ridge. Sean White came out of the house, telling them to leave.

What happened next was disputed. Sean White claimed that when he came up to McCaughey and good-naturedly told him to leave, McCaughey hit him in the face, crushing the bones in his


"It was one of the first things out of Michael McCaughey's mouth, 'Nobody tells me what to do,' " Allan B. Rabineau, attorney for the White brothers, said in his closing argument.

But McCaughey claimed that after he was told to leave, he turned to get back in his car and was rushed by Sean White. It was only then that he hit Sean White in self-defense, McCaughey said.

"The man was in his face and he struck out at him," said Ronald A. Baradel, McCaughey's attorney.

Thomas White, hearing that his brother was in a fight, came running from the house and pushed another of the teen-agers, Ralph D. Hummer, off the lawn into the street and delivered a flying kick that missed him.

Hummer got up, and both he and McCaughey allegedly hit Thomas White in the face.

Sean White said he had to undergo surgery to repair damage to his cheek and jaw. He asked the court for almost $18,000 from each defendant to cover medical costs and $150,000 from each for pain and suffering. Only McCaughey was ordered to pay the $40,000 awarded to Sean White.

Thomas White had asked for nearly $3,700 to cover medical expenses and $10,000 for pain and suffering from each defendant. McCaughey and Hummer were ordered to pay him && $1,821 each.

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