Applying state substantive law, the Fourth Circuit held that a prior adjudication of negligence in an action brought against the present plaintiff was res judicata, even though defendant was not a party to the former action. The court discarded the mutuality rule and denied relitigation on the ground of effecting the policy of res judicata without impairing the litigant's constitutional right to a day in court, but failed to acknowledge the nature and extent of its investigation of plaintiff's former defense.

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