Jury Verdict for Defendant in Bicycle-Car Collision in Chicago Loop Intersection Where Both Parties Claimed Green Light

On June 21, 2012, Matthew Lyman, 19, was driving his bicycle northbound on by the defendant, Thomas Garcia. Garcia’s car was traveling westbound on Congress Parkway. Matthew sustained a fractured left wrist, which required open reduction internal fixation with a plate and ten screws. A 3-inch surgical scar was left on his wrist, he had road rash on the left side of his torso and his left arm. He also suffered permanent discoloration of the skin on his left arm from the road rash.Lyman had $34,332 in medical expenses along with $3,800 in lost time from his job as a bicycle mechanic.

He argued that he entered the intersection (Congress and Michigan) on a green light and that the light was yellow when the crash occurred. The defendant Garcia argued that his light was green as he approached and entered the intersection and there were no vehicles or bikes when he entered it. Garcia maintained that Lyman ran a red light on his bike.

Garcia said Lyman and his friend, who was on another bike, were one-third of a block away from the intersection when their light changed to yellow. They decided to pedal faster to beat the light instead of slowing down and stopping. The light turned red prior to the crash, and Garcia could not see Lyman before the impact because Lyman came from his driver’s side behind the mirror, which was where the initial point of contact occurred.

The attorney for Lyman asked the jury to return a verdict of $78,132. The attorney for Garcia offered nothing. The demand to settle the case before trial was $100,000. The jury’s verdict was in favor of Thomas Garcia, evidently believing his version of the occurrence.

Matthew Lyman v. Thomas P. Garcia, 12 L 13879 (Cook County, Ill.).

Kreisman Law Offices has been handling automobile accident cases, bicycle accident cases and truck accident cases for individuals and families who have been harmed, injured or died as a result of the carelessness or negligence of another for more than 38 years in and around Chicago, Cook County and its surrounding areas, including Wheaton, Rosemont, Roselle, Morton Grove, Highwood, Homewood, Flossmoor, Vernon Hills, Evanston, Wilmette, Wheeling and Mount Prospect, Ill.

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