$1 Million Settlement Paid To Florida Motorist Struck By Driver Who Ran Red Light At Florida Intersection
On June 22, 2015, Jerry Chad Pilkinton was traveling eastbound on SE 5th Street in Ocala, Marion County, Florida. At that same time, Curtis Eldridge Clark was driving a 2014 Ford F150 owned by Antis Automotive and Roadside Service, and was traveling northbound on SE 1st Avenue in the middle straight through lane approaching its intersection with SE 5th Street. Mr. Clark ran the red traffic signal at the intersection of SE 1st Avenue and SE 5th Street and proceeded through the intersection and into Mr. Pilkinton’s path of travel striking his truck on the right passenger side. Mr. Pilkinton’s truck flipped over and came to rest on its roof at the northeast corner of the intersection facing west. Before his truck came to rest, the left rear side struck a street sign. The investigating officer charged Clark with running a red light in causing the collision.
Pilkinton was seriously injured in the collision, suffering, inter alia, post-concussion syndrome; shear axonal injury; post-traumatic stress disorder; cervical disc bulges and disc herniations; bilateral knee sprains; cervical and lumbar radiculopathy; aphasia; right shoulder tendinitis and impingement that led to an arthroscopic Neer Mumford and SLAP repair surgery. In addition, his injuries led to surgery that consisted of an anterior cervical discectomy at C5-6 and C6-7 with microsurgical decompression of the spinal cord and nerve roots, anterior cervical arthrodesis at C5-6 and C6-7 using PEEK titanium coated cages with autologous bone marrow aspirate mixed with nanoss, and anterior cervical instrumentation with Exactech Ambassador plate and screws; as well as, surgery that consisted of a microdiscectomy at L5-S1 on the right with the use of operating microscope with microsurgical dissection techniques and obtaining an autologous fat graft through separate perifascial incision, as well as a small hemilaminectomy.
Pinkinton filed suit on Sept. 20, 2016. The defense offered $450,000 to settle, but Pinkinton demanded the Progressive Insurance Company policy limits of $1,000,00.00. In March of 2017, the parties settled the action for the full policy limits. The total amount paid for Mr. Pilkinton’s property damage claim was $24,835.61, thus reducing the available bodily injury coverage to $975,164.39.
Plaintiff was represented by Marianne Howanitz, Esq. of MARIANNE HOWANITZ P.A., Ocala, FL. No information was provided as to defense counsel.
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