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Family Sues City of Lakeland, Florida For Man’s Wrongful Death During Police Car Chase

The family of Kenneth "Roger" Gadd has filed a Florida wrongful death lawsuit against the city of Lakeland, Florida. Gadd was killed on July 17, 2006 when the car that he was riding in was struck by a truck being driven by a theft suspect that Lakeland police were chasing. The suspect, Tonya English, was sentenced to 30 years in prison for DUI manslaughter. Police discovered that there was alcohol and drugs in her system when the car accident happened. Gadd’s son, his mother Dorothy Holm, and his sister Deborah McGlothen are also suing English and Erik Pearson, the owner of the car that English was driving. Pearson had picked up English, a hitchhiker, and left her in the car with the engine running while he ran into a store. English took off with his car and Pearson called 911. Police chased English, even deploying stop sticks. The police pursuit was moving as fast as up to 70mph. During the chase on State Road 33, English moved into the opposite late and hit Gadd’s Toyota Camry. He died instantly. Lakeland police say the pursuit was justified and that they acted within police pursuit policy. Gadd’s family says that they hope the lawsuit will lead to a stricter police pursuit policy. The family is suing Pearson because they believe that he never took responsibility for leaving a stranger in his car with the engine on, which resulted in the deadly car chase and collision. Our South Florida wrongful death law firm has helped many families recover compensation for the accidental deaths of their loved ones. In Florida, survivors of a decedent that can claim wrongful death include the deceased’s children, spouse, parents, and other that may have relied on the victim for support. One of our Florida wrongful death lawyers in Hollywood, Naples, or Miami would be happy to speak with you during a free consultation. Financial recovery for wrongful death may include medical expenses, funeral/cremation/burial costs, loss of earnings, pain and suffering, loss of financial support, loss of emotional support, and other damages. Family of Police Chase Victim Files a Lawsuit, The Ledger.com, April 3, 2008 Contact The Law Office of John D. Ameen, P.A. today.

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