Police chase results in Chicago car accident, $3 million injury settlement

City Council approved a $3 million settlement this month in the case of a young woman who suffered serious brain injuries in a Chicago car accident resulting from a police chase, the Tribune reported.

The woman was 17-years-old when she was seriously injured in August 2004. She was a passenger in a vehicle westbound on Addison Street at Kedzie Avenue when her vehicle was broadsided by a stolen van being chased by police.

Occupants of the van and a witness on the street testified that police had been chasing the van for several blocks with lights and sirens activated. The officers said they had just activated their emergency equipment and were several car lengths being the van when the accident occurred.

The officers were disciplined for being outside their district without approval.

ABC7 reported that the woman’s lawsuit claimed that the officers violated policy because they were not authorized to chase the van.

The city’s pursuit policy, following two 1999 incidents, requires officers to get supervisory permission before initiating a chase and to break it off if a pursued vehicle begins disobeying traffic signals, according to Policeone.com.

The officers were reportedly traveling 55 mph in a 25 mph zone. The accident ejected the victim from the vehicle, where she landed 40 feet away. In addition to a traumatic brain injury, she suffered a broken collarbone, lacerated liver and a damaged kidney.

The media reports did not name the attorney for the plaintiff.

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