United States District Court, M.D. Florida, Tampa Division
C. BUCKLEW United States District Judge
cause comes before the Court on two motions: (1)
Defendant's Motion to Exclude the Opinions of
Plaintiff's Expert, William Boege, III (Doc. No. 43),
which Plaintiff opposes (Doc. No. 56); and (2)
Plaintiff's Motion to Strike Defendant's Expert,
Douglas Stimpson (Doc. No. 44), which Defendant opposes (Doc.
No. 53). The Court held a hearing on these motions on
February 7, 2018. As explained below, the motions are granted
in part and denied in part.
December of 2014, Plaintiff Oil Consulting Enterprise, Inc.
contracted with Defendant Hawker Beechcraft Global Customer
Support, LLC to perform a Phase I-IV pre-purchase inspection
on a King Air 350 aircraft at Defendant's Tampa facility
(“First Inspection”). (Doc. No. 46-2). During the
First Inspection, no major corrosion damage was discovered.
January 7, 2016, the aircraft was taken to the Cessna Service
Center in San Antonio, Texas for a pre-purchase inspection
(“Second Inspection”). During the Second
Inspection, significant corrosion was discovered.
contends that the extensive corrosion that was discovered
during the Second Inspection must have existed during the
First Inspection. As a result, on November 23, 2016,
Plaintiff filed suit against Defendant in state court, and
Defendant later removed the case to this Court. In its
amended complaint, Plaintiff alleges that Defendant breached
their contract to conduct the First Inspection and that
Defendant negligently performed the First Inspection by
failing to discover the extensive corrosion on the aircraft.
(Doc. No. 18).
before the Court are two Daubert motions. The Court
will address each motion in turn.
Rule of Evidence 702 provides the following:
A witness who is qualified as an expert by knowledge, skill,
experience, training, or education may testify in the form of
an opinion or otherwise if: (a) the expert's scientific,
technical, or other specialized knowledge will help the trier
of fact to understand the evidence or to determine a fact in
issue; (b) the testimony is based on sufficient facts or
data; (c) the testimony is the product of reliable principles
and methods; and (d) the expert has reliably applied the
principles and methods to the facts of the case.
F.R.E. 702. Rule 702 requires the district court to perform a
gatekeeping function for expert testimony. See U.S. v.
Frazier, 387 F.3d 1244, 1260 (11th Cir. 2004). As
explained by the Frazier court:
This [gatekeeping] function “inherently require[s] the
trial court to conduct an exacting analysis” of the
foundations of expert opinions to ensure they meet
the standards for admissibility under Rule 702. The
importance of Daubert's gatekeeping requirement
cannot be overstated. As the Supreme Court framed it in
Kumho Tire: “[T]he objective of that
requirement is to ensure the reliability and relevancy of
expert testimony. It is to make certain that an expert,
whether basing testimony upon professional studies or
personal experience, employs in the courtroom the same level
of intellectual rigor that characterizes the practice of an
expert in the relevant field.” The district court's
role is especially significant since the expert's opinion
“can be both powerful and quite misleading because of
the difficulty in evaluating it.”
Id. (citations omitted). With this in mind, the
Court addresses the parties' motions.
Plaintiff's Expert, ...