Articles Posted in Auto Accidents

On May 11, 2018, Alyce L. Richards and Joshua T. Wilson were involved in a car crash. Richards was injured and Wilson died.

On May 6, 2020, Richards filed a lawsuit, five days before the statute of limitations expired, alleging that the crash was caused by Wilson’s negligence.

Richards was aware at the time of filing that Wilson was deceased, and he was named as the only defendant. On May 20, 2020, Richards moved to appoint a special administrator, and Kimberly Vaca was appointed. Vaca moved to dismiss pursuant to §2-619 of the Illinois Code of Civil Procedure, arguing that the lawsuit was not filed within the two-year period and thus was time barred.

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Michelle Olivarez was stopped in traffic when a vehicle driven by Kelsey Nelson rear-ended her vehicle.  The crash aggravated Olivarez’s pre-existing neck pain, migraines and fibromyalgia.

Olivarez, 39, also suffered a soft-tissue injury to her left knee. She received physical therapy for her knee injury, was prescribed medicine, and received neck injections.

Olivarez’s medical expenses totaled more than $108,000.

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Maria Lezcano, 43, was driving through an intersection when an SUV driven by Grace Coleman struck the passenger side of Lezcano’s car. Ms. Lezcano suffered herniated disks at C4-5, C5-6, L3-4, L4-5, all of which necessitated pain management, chiropractic care and surgery.

Lezcano continues to suffer ongoing neck and back pain.  She now has limited range of motion in her neck.

Lezcano sued Coleman, alleging that after obeying the stop sign, Coleman chose not to yield the right-of-way of the intersection.  The lawsuit also alleged that Coleman’s SUV owner was vicariously liable.

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Jose Maclovio, an 18-year-old farmworker, was riding home in a van driven by Ramiro Tadeo-Lazaaro.

A vehicle driven by Craig Brewer rear-ended the van as it was stopped at a railroad crossing. Maclovio suffered a burst fracture at C5, which required an emergency surgery.  Sadly, despite this treatment, Maclovio suffered partial quadriplegia.

He sued Tadeo-Lazaaro, Brewer and the van’s owner alleging negligent operation of the defendants’ vehicles.

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Donald Peace was driving to work in rainy conditions in the middle of the night.  As he drove along a two-lane highway, Keith Rock attempted to back out onto a side street, blocking several lanes of the highway. Rock was driving a tractor-trailer for Berkeley Scrap Metal.

Peace’s vehicle crashed into the Berkeley Scrap Metal tractor-trailer that was blocking the street; he suffered fatal injuries. He was survived by his wife and two adult children.

The Peace estate and family sued Berkeley Scrap Metal, alleging liability for Rock’s choosing not to keep a proper lookout when backing onto the side street.

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Elijah Simone was riding his bicycle through an intersection when Bruce Jameson’s motor vehicle was turning left in front of him and struck him. Simone, 23, suffered a neck fracture at C6-7. The neck fracture required a fusion surgery.

Simone’s medical expenses were more than $474,000. He was an assistant at a pharmacy, and his lost wages totaled $15,000.

Simone sued Jameson, alleging that he made a negligent left turn.

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Before the Illinois Supreme Court handed down its decision in Peach v. McGovern, there were differing Illinois Appellate Court cases about whether an expert was needed to testify about a photograph of post-accident vehicle damage before it could be admitted into evidence. The Peach decision held that expert testimony is not required to admit post-accident vehicle photographs and settle this conflict in the law.

In its holding, the Peach decision expressly overturned DiCosola v. Bowman, 342 Ill.App.3d 530, 538 (1st Dist. 2003) and Baraniak v. Kurby, 371 Ill.App.3d 310, 317-18 (1st Dist. 2007) and held that the proper analysis had been appropriate in the cases of Ford v. Grizzle, 398 Ill.App.3d 639, 648 (5th Dist. 2010), Fronabarger v. Burns, 385 Ill.App.3d 560, 565 (5th Dist. 2008), Jackson v. Seib, 372 Ill.App.3d 1061, 1071 (5th Dist. 2007) and Ferro v. Griffiths, 361 Ill.App.3d 738, 743 (3d Dist. 2005).

In the Illinois Supreme Court decision in Peach, the Court ruled that the question of whether the photographs were admissible depended on whether they were relevant, and that relevancy is tested in light of logic, experience, and accepted assumptions about human behavior. Peach, Id. ¶ 26 (citing Boykin v. Estate of DeBoer, 192 Ill.2d 49, 57 (2000)).

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Jerry Troutwine, 46, was traveling eastbound on a two-lane local highway on a rainy and slushy morning. He was driving his employer’s vehicle.

Justin Nichols was traveling westbound in a dump truck filled with concrete when he lost control of his truck near a downhill curve. The truck’s brakes locked, and the truck crossed the centerline, colliding head-on with Troutwine’s vehicle.

Troutwine died as a result of his injuries. He had been a truck driver and mechanic earning almost $30,000 per year. Troutwine was survived by his wife and teenage daughter.

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This was a case of a rear-end car crash in which the plaintiff, William Kevin Peach, brought a lawsuit against Lyndsey E. McGovern  stemming  from personal injuries he sustained in an automobile incident. The jury returned a verdict in favor of defendant, and the judgment on the verdict was entered.

The plaintiff appealed, contending that the jury verdict was against the manifest weight of the evidence, especially when the defendant was adjudged negligent as a matter of law. The plaintiff further asserted that the trial court erred in allowing the defense counsel, over objection, to present evidence pertaining to the relative amount of damage sustained by the vehicles. The plaintiff also argued that there was a direct correlation between the amount of damage to the vehicles, as depicted in photographs and plaintiff’s injuries.

In this case, the plaintiff was on his way home around 10 p.m. after visiting his girlfriend on the evening of July 17, 2010. As he was driving home, he had to stop at an intersection to allow traffic to clear. While waiting at the stop sign, the rear of plaintiff’s pickup truck was hit by another vehicle driven by the defendant who was also on her way home. The defendant claims she was fully stopped behind plaintiff, when her foot slipped off the brake. She further testified that the vehicle simply rolled into the rear of the plaintiff’s truck. The plaintiff, on the other hand, estimated the defendant’s speed to have been 20-25 mph at the time of impact.  He also noticed that the defendant was on her cell phone.

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Anne Sholes, 53, a neurosurgeon, was riding her bicycle in a bicycle lane to work when a Solano County employee operating a box truck, struck her from behind. Dr. Sholes suffered a broken back and a fractured left leg and ankle.

She underwent multiple surgeries to repair her back and leg, including replacement of hardware. She then required extensive physical therapy, hyperbaric chamber treatments, and acupuncture. Dr. Sholes’ medical expenses totaled $270,000.

Dr. Sholes was earning $400,000 annually as a neurosurgeon. She returned to work as a physician advisor two years after the incident, but her salary was reduced to $75,000 per year.

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