Ride the Ducks Trial Day 14: Yuta



Monday October 22, 2018

Just spent a weekend in Lululemon and now it is time to get court ready again.  There have been times over the years where have resented having to figure out what to wear.  Including whether to repeat or not in a long trial.  But dressing up for court is really like putting on a costume for the big show.  There is a stage and audience and what we wear is a part of the whole process.  So for the most part, don’t whine.  Messages are being sent by what we wear in court.

Today am more modern than usual.  My collection of jackets dates back several decades.  Honestly except for the oversized ones with giant shoulder pads – they just don’t go out of style. Am wearing a new one that is slate gray with frayed edges over a silk black white and gray leopard top and black slim gap slacks with fringed ankle boots.    

Call the first fire fighter who arrived at the scene. Great memory – sets the stage for…

Yuta Masumoto.  First bus passenger to testify who survived.  Yuta did not speak English 3 years ago when he arrived in Seattle.  He speaks it now but wanted an interpreter.  Convinced him to go outside of his comfort zone and speak without.  This turns out to be a good decision.  He doesn’t speak perfectly – but he testifies perfectly.  After we set the stage of getting on the bus, going first to the park, loading back up and heading towards the bridge, we pause and play a video from another passenger’s cel phone.  It shows the view while the bus drives over the bridge.  You can see the sights.  Suddenly the phone flips around and around.  There is noise and crashing.  Then the phone is facing the back of a seat and just stays focused on the same piece of nothing.  There is silence.  Then the moans begin and last for almost another minute.  This is perhaps – even more than the bus dash cams - the most impactful piece of evidence shown.  Two of the jurors visibly start shaking.  Because you are straining to hear what people are going through.  And then Yuta talks about what happens to him. 

I saw I had to get out of the bus.  Then I was checking my body.  Like from upper side.  And then I could move my body.  I didn’t see damage to my upper body.  So I thought I could get up.  Then I tried to move.  But I couldn’t feel anything from my lower body.  Then when I saw my legs.  My left leg point out different way than usual.  And then I noticed I broke my legs.  I think I got too shocked from the impact.  That’s why I didn’t feel any pain at that time.

But I tried to get out.  And then I tried to realign my left leg.  Because it was pointing out weird direction.  So I grabbed the seat behind me and in front.  I tried to stand up using my right leg. Gravity made my left leg turn back the normal way.  But it was completely broken and much longer than the right leg.

It is entirely moving.  You can see a clip of it here.  https://komonews.com/news/local/survivor-tells-jury-i-though-i-was-going-to-die-in-ride-the-ducks-civil-trial

This young man was in Harborview the trauma hospital and a rehabilitation hospital for about 3 months.  In a truly silly move, Scott Wakefield and Tad Seder try to cross him.  They should have left him alone.