I-57 fatality is subject of Madison County suit

Kelly Holleran Sep. 16, 2009, 3:47am

Claiming that a Wood River man died after his vehicle was shoved into the middle of oncoming traffic, the executor of the man's estate is seeking more than $300,000 in a wrongful death lawsuit.

Merle C. Bassett, executor of the estate of David A. Jack, filed a lawsuit Sept. 10 in Madison County Circuit Court against Brian DeAngelis, KDXpress and Diamond Rental.

Bassett claims Jack was driving a 2007 Chevrolet Impala in the easternmost lane and heading north on Interstate 57 near mile post 65 in Franklin County on Nov. 12 at about 7:46 p.m.

At the same time, DeAngelis was driving a 2007 International Harvester Trucktractor owned by Diamond Rental for his employer, KDXpress. He was also traveling in the easternmost lane on Interstate 57, according to the complaint.

Suddenly DeAngelis collided with the back of Jack's vehicle, the suit states.

"Plaintiff's decedent's vehicle was propelled across the median separating north and southbound Interstate 57, directly into the path of two southbound vehicles, thereby causing a second collision," the complaint says.

Because of the collision, Jack sustained severe injuries that caused his death, Bassett alleges.

Bassett blames DeAngelis for failing to keep a proper lookout for Jack's vehicle, for failing to reduce his speed to avoid a collision and for traveling too fast.

In addition to the more than $300,000, Bassett is also seeking costs and other relief the court deems just.

Robert H. Gregory of the Law Office of Robert H. Gregory in East Alton will be representing him.

Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-948.

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