$6.6 Million Auto Collision Award Makes Waves in Southern California

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A payout by the city of Los Angeles to the family of a woman killed in an automobile accident could provide the impetus for the Los Angeles Police Department to begin changing the way they conduct their affairs.

The story was recently reported in the Los Angeles Times, and it has now made its way onto Southern California Public Radio.  The initial incident involved a female driver who was hit by police cruisers at night while those officers were going more than double the speed limit without running their lights or sirens.  Thanks to the help of law firm Panish Shea & Boyle, her family was able to receive $6.6 million from the city of LA.

Law enforcement officials’ investigation into the event was sloppy, and initial blame was placed on the victim, a finding that independent investigators determined was not accurate.  Now, officials are beginning to seriously question the way that the LAPD handles their traffic collision investigations.

In an effort to make a change, accidents involving police vehicles are going to be treated from here on out just like officer-involved shootings.  That means that there will be a larger level of scrutiny into the incidents, and officers will be separated following a crash so as to prevent potential collusion.

This increased emphasis on proper investigation is a welcome outcome for both Los Angelenos and the city itself.  For those interested in learning more about this monumental case, follow the above link to listen to the full report on the radio.

You can get the audio download (mp3) directly with this link: DOWNLOAD AUDIO