Wrongful death suit filed in recent crash near Pere Marquette

Steve Gonzalez Aug. 15, 2007, 1:00am

The estate of a Springfield motorcyclist killed in an accident on July 29, filed a wrongful death suit against the Highland woman who allegedly collided with him.

In a suit filed Aug. 10 in Madison County Circuit Court, Daron Harden's estate claims Lenora Morris, 64, of Highland, collided with Harden, who was on a 2003 Harley Davidson FLS, on Illinois 100, one mile south of Pere Marquette State Park in Jersey County.

According to the complaint, after Morris struck Harden with her uninsured 2007 GMC Sierra, he was thrown onto the hood and windshield of her vehicle and then onto the pavement killing him.

Prosecutors have charged Morris with operating an uninsured motor vehicle and improper lane usage.

Police say she recently had surgery, and did not have use of her right hand. A total of five vehicles were involved in the crash and several were airlifted by medical helicopters.

The accident scene was over 600 feet long.

Harden's estate claims Morris was negligent by:

  • failing to keep her vehicle under proper control;

  • failing to change the course of her vehicle to avoid striking Harden;

  • failing to keep a proper lookout;

  • failing to reduce her speed to avoid an accident;

  • driving her vehicle while she did not have the use of her right hand;

  • driving her vehicle while talking on a cell phone; and

  • improper lane usage.

    Harden's estate is seeking damages in excess of $100,000 for two minor children who have been deprived of their father's support, services and society, the complaint states.

    The estate is represented by Randall Segatto of Springfield.

    The case has been assigned to Circuit Judge David Hylla

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