It will cost taxpayers about $65,000 as a result of a car accident Police Chief Joe Gaudett had with a couple injured in the crash in 2010, according to a ruling by Superior Court Judge Dale Radcliffe.
“Chief Gaudett failed to take timely evasive action in an attempt to avoid the impact,” the judge ruled, according to the CT Post’s Dan Tepfer. See story here.
Attorney Paul Ganim, who’s also judge of probate, filed a lawsuit three years ago against Gaudett and the city on behalf of two East Main Street residents claiming the chief ran a red light Downtown in 2010.
“I’m very happy because the court awarded more than what I was willing to settle the case,” Ganim told OIB. “The chief claimed he wasn’t at fault. That’s not what the court found. Why would the city put the chief on the stand to have the judge rule on his credibility? I would not put my top officials on the stand in an intersection accident.”
Mayoral spokesman Brett Broesder responds:
“We’re baffled by the court’s decision to equally distribute blame in this case. Clearly the plaintiff was speeding without regard for other vehicles on the road, and is at fault for the collision.”
According to the complaint, on August 2, 2010, at 10:29 a.m. Roy Padilla-Jimenez was operating a 1999 Mazda Protege on North Frontage Road near Lafayette Boulevard Downtown when Gaudett, operating a city vehicle 2007 Cadillac Escalade, collided with the front end of the plaintiff’s vehicle. Lucy Batista, also a plaintiff in the case, was a passenger. Gaudett at the time of the accident was acting police chief. He was appointed to a five-year term by Mayor Bill Finch in December of 2010. To learn more about the implications of an accident like this one, learn more with this car wreck injury attorney near me.
The complaint accused Gaudett of negligence, operating the motor vehicle at an unreasonable rate of speed and running a red light and causing an accident which will cause the driver to hire an expert car and motorcycle accident.
The complaint asserted the plaintiffs suffered injuries to neck and back incurring “significant medical expenses” and “physical therapy for injuries” and “has been unable to perform activities of daily living.” The accident also caused loss of work and earnings, according to the court complaint.
Ganim had filed notice of intent to sue seven weeks after the accident. Ganim and lawyers for the City Attorney’s Office had gone back and forth in a flurry of legal motions, maneuverings and objections, including scheduling a deposition for the chief.
Unable to reach a settlement agreement, a trial took place before Judge Radcliffe.
According to the police report by officer Peter Kemeza (two other officers were also at the scene), Padilla-Jimenez had been transported to the hospital by AMR ambulance. Gaudett “stated he was experiencing some soreness to left side but stated he would seek medical attention from his own physician.”