The city of Oakland will pay $12 million to a motorcyclist who was severely injured last year when a police officer crashed into him after running a red light.
The settlement was approved by Oakland City Council Tuesday night. It is one of the largest settlements in city history, surpassing the $10.9 million payout to 119 victims who sued in the Oakland Riders police scandal in 2003. Back then, a group of officers allegedly planted drugs and beat Oakland residents.
It seems like Oakland police officers are costing the city a lot of money.
Elliott Van Fleet, 35, got thrown off his motorcycle and suffered devastating injuries: pelvis and shoulder blade fractures, vertebra, hip, and unfortunately his left leg had to be amputated below the knee. The crash happened two weeks before his wedding date.
Van Fleet was riding his motorcycle west on 19th Street and had a green light at Broadway. The unidentified Oakland police officer in a patrol SUV was headed north on Broadway, running a red light and broadsiding Van Fleet’s motorcycle.
It is still unclear whether the officer has been disciplined or not, or if the authorities found him guilty of violating police policy by running a red light.
Van Fleet’s total medical costs have far exceeded $500.00 at this point, and his attorney said additional surgeries and care are expected to cost at least $4 million.
In additional to his physical injuries, Van Fleet suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder and anxiety – both made worse the second he sees an Oakland police car. His wife said he was particularly upset after witnessing another Oakland police crash, this time versus a pedestrian.
The case is going to a civil jury trial beginning July 30.
Source: East Bay Times
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