Family of Victim Killed During Police Pursuit Settles Lawsuit for $3 Million.

With respect to nearly all motor vehicle accident claims, the grounds for finding that a person or company is responsible for your damages, as a matter of law, is by proving that the other party was negligent.  The fault of the other party is established by demonstrating that they did something wrong, or otherwise violated a legal duty, that was owed to the injured person.  Auto accident negligence, with respect to the operation of a motor vehicle, can be thought of as a finding that the operator behaved carelessly or otherwise improperly, and that this misconduct resulted in injury to another person.  The at-fault party, namely the person that is found to be negligent, is liable for any damages that may have been caused by his or her carelessness or mistake.  If you have been injured in a car accident, contacting a Boston car accident attorney is the first step in examining your legal options.

In May 2013, Rachel Kamin was driving home from her shift as a nurse at the Providence Regional Medical Center Everett in Everett, Washington.  At the same time, a police officer, Mark Atterbury, was pursuing a convicted felon down Everett Street.  Officer Atterbury was chasing the alleged criminal, Joseph Strange, at a speed of 90 miles per hour.  Strange ran a red light and crashed into Kamin’s car.  Kamin suffered severe head injuries and died two days later at the hospital.

According to heraldnet.com, Kamin’s family filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the Bothell Police Department and Strange.  The lawsuit alleged that Atterbury was reckless and negligent in pursuing Strange.   Moreover, the lawsuit alleged that Atterbury and another officer turned off their lights and sirens while they were chasing Strange.  An internal investigation concluded that Atterbury violated the police department’s pursuit policy.  It was found that Atterbury should have called off the pursuit about two miles before the crash because “the danger to the public outweighed the need to stop the suspect.” Atterbury was only suspended from work for one day.

However, the judge stated that Strange was solely to blame for the accident.  Furthermore, Strange was found guilty of second-degree murder and is currently being held at a correctional facility.  The Kamin family was able to settle the wrongful death lawsuit for $3 million. Because of this police cruiser accident, the Bothell Police Department has adopted stricter pursuit policies and has trained officers accordingly.  Attorney Robert Gellatly represented the Kamin family in this matter.

If you or a loved one has been injured in an auto accident, or if a loved one has been killed, please call our expert Boston auto accident attorneys at 617-787-3700 or email us at info@gilhoylaw.com.

 

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