Villalobos, Wendy C. v. Target Corporation

On February 7, 2024, the Connecticut jury returned the verdict in favor of the Defendant Target Corporation, and against Plaintiff Wendy C. Villalobos in a personal injury lawsuit that arose from an accident in a Target Parking lot.

Case Background

On October 23, 2018, Plaintiff Wendy C. Villalobos filed a personal injury and premises liability suit against Defendant Target Corporation before the Connecticut Superior Court, New Britain Judicial District. Judge Kimberly A. Knox presided over this case. [Case number: HHB-CV18-6048445-S]


On or around October 12, 2016, and shortly before 10:45 a.m., Pamela Duval, a Connecticut resident, was driving a 2003 Gray Ford Focus SE Comfort (“the Duval vehicle”).

Around the same time and date, Plaintiff Wendy C. Villalobos, also a resident of Connecticut, exited the Target building. She was walking across one of the two marked crosswalks in the Target Roadway toward her parked vehicle in the Target parking lot.

At the same time, Pamela Duval who was driving the Duval vehicle, turned right from a row of parked vehicles in the Target parking lot onto the Target Roadway, when she suddenly and unexpectedly collided with pedestrian Plaintiff Villalobos.

As a consequence of the collision, Villalobos was thrown onto the hood of the Duval vehicle and subsequently onto the ground, where she lay motionless and in considerable shock and pain.

While lying motionless and in pain on the ground, an employee of Target Corporation commanded Villalobos to get up, despite her state of disorientation and inability to do so, causing her additional distress, pain, and persistent emotional trauma. As a result of the collision with the vehicle, Wendy C. Villalobos sustained severe injuries.


As a consequence of the collision with the Duval vehicle and the negligence of Target Corporation, Plaintiff Villalobos suffered personal injuries and losses.

She experienced lower back discomfort radiating pain to her right groin and lateral aspects of both lower extremities, accompanied by electrical shocks following the October 2016 incident where she was struck by a car and landed on its hood. At the time, she was diagnosed with a concussion and increased lateral pain extending to her right groin. A lumbar spine MRI revealed a mild mass effect on the exiting L5 nerve root on the right side. Villalobos continues to endure pain in her lower back, right hip, and right foot, along with ongoing symptoms from the concussion.

Additionally, she suffered from neural foramina stenosis in her lumbar spine, characterized by persistent lower back pain spreading in a band-like pattern to the lateral aspects of both lower extremities and down to her foot. She reported experiencing electrical shocks, and the pain may necessitate future consideration for lower back or hip surgery due to the impact of the pedestrian-vehicle collision.

Moreover, as a result of the collision, Villalobos endured severe pain, mental anguish, depression, anger, irritability, and disrupted sleep. These injuries have caused and will continue to cause permanent disability, preventing her from fully enjoying life’s activities.


As an additional consequence of the incident, Villalobos incurred financial expenses for medical care, diagnostic studies, physical therapy, X-rays, and surgeries. These costs were necessitated by the injuries sustained in the collision. As a result, Villalobos was likely to remain unable to engage fully in her usual activities as she did before the accident, resulting in further personal loss and hardship.

The Plaintiff sought monetary compensation for damages incurred under this personal injury lawsuit. She also requested any other relief that the Court deemed fair and appropriate in this matter.

Key Arguments and Proceedings

Legal Representation


The Plaintiff claimed that the collision between her and the Duval vehicle, which led to her injuries and losses, was largely due to Target Corporation’s negligence. Target failed to warn both drivers and pedestrians in its parking lot about the inherent dangers of vehicle-pedestrian interactions. Moreover, it did not implement any form of traffic control for managing pedestrian and vehicle movement within the parking area.

Allegedly, the company painted crosswalks in a heavily trafficked zone without standard safety features seen in regulated pedestrian crossings, like designated entry and exit points or signal devices. Additionally, Target neglected to create islands or safe walking areas within the parking lot, further exposing pedestrians to risks. Furthermore, the company did not adequately train its employees to respond appropriately and promptly to emergencies on its premises, resulting in a callous and insensitive reaction to the incident.


Defendant Target Corporation denied the allegations of negligence. By way of special defense, they asserted that any injuries, losses, or damages that the Plaintiff purportedly suffered due to the incident were directly caused by her negligence, which played a significant role in causing her alleged injuries, surpassing any negligence attributed to Pamela Duval or the defendant. Specifically, the Plaintiff was negligent by failing to use her senses and faculties appropriately, neglecting to watch for vehicles on the road, and being inattentive to her surroundings.

Expert Testimony

Both parties presented testimonies from experts from various fields in this personal injury lawsuit to strengthen their case.

Plaintiff presented testimonies of experts Augustus Mazzocca, M.S., M.D., James Mazzara, M.D., Christopher Lena, Norah M. Lusignan, LPC, William Garrity, M.D., Patrick B. Senatus, M.D, Daniel Gianoli, M.D,  Andrew W. Meisler, Ph.D,  Jeffery A. Cissell, P.E. and  Aaron Hemquist P.E.

The Defendant presented testimonies from experts Daniel W. O’Neill, P.E.,  Dennis Ogiela, MD, Charles C. Dike, MD, MPH, FRCPsych and Charles Harlow, PE

Jury Verdict

On February 7, 2024, the Connecticut jury returned the verdict in favor of the Defendant Target Corporation, and against Plaintiff Wendy C. Villalobos. On the same date, Judge Kimberly A. Knox entered a judgment affirming the verdict for the Defendant.

Court Documents: