Kennedy Watkins LLC recently obtained a $1.3 million recovery from the City of Chicago for the family of a deceased motorist, who was struck by a Ford Explorer that was fleeing police. On April 28, 2017, Chicago police received a 911 call of “shots fired,” and responded to the scene. As they arrived at the location, the responding police officers observed a white Ford Explorer fleeing the area at a high rate of speed. The officers followed the vehicle, and reported its direction of travel. Tragically, the fleeing SUV ran a red light, and crashed into an innocent motorist, killing him. Surveillance video shows the responding police officers arriving approximately eight seconds after the collision. The driver of the fleeing SUV escaped capture.
The family of the deceased motorist retained Kennedy Watkins. Our firm alleged that the pursuing police officers were willful and wanton in engaging the fleeing SUV in a high-speed pursuit. We asserted that the pursuing officers violated the Chicago Police Department’s own internal policies regarding pursuits by continuing to pursue the SUV after the officers temporarily lost sight of it, and in failing to terminate the pursuit when the speeds involved posed a significant danger to the public.