Father sues allegedly intoxicated driver over daughter's injuries

Kelly Holleran Apr. 14, 2010, 6:27am

The father of a minor girl has filed suit against the woman who he says caused his daughter's injuries when the woman got into a single vehicle collision while driving intoxicated and while transporting the minor girl.

Minor Abigail Deitz was riding as a passenger in defendant Kimberly Benson's vehicle when Benson visited co-defendant Krishna Gas doing business as O'Fallon BP Food Shop on May 29, 2009, Abigail Deitz's father, Jeffrey Deitz, claims. During her stop at the shop, Benson purchased alcoholic beverages and subsequently became intoxicated, according to the complaint filed April 1 in St. Clair County Circuit Court.

Following her departure from O'Fallon BP Food Shop, at about 3:08 p.m., Benson was driving Abigail Deitz near the US Bank building on Plaza Drive in Fairview Heights when she failed to maintain control of her vehicle, causing it to leave the road and strike a tree, splitting the tree in half, the suit states.

Because of the collision, Abigail Deitz sustained severe injuries to her head, right hand, left knee and body; sustained emotional injuries; and has been prevented from attending to her usual activities, the complaint says. In addition, Jeffrey Deitz claims he has incurred medical costs of more than $5,000 on behalf of his daughter.

Jeffrey Deitz blames Benson for causing the accident, saying she negligently drove in a reckless fashion, failed to keep her motor vehicle within her lane of travel, failed to keep her motor vehicle on the road, failed to stop in time to avoid colliding with a tree, failed to exercise ordinary care to avoid a collision, drove while under the influence of alcohol and failed to keep a proper lookout.

In his six-count suit, Jeffrey Deitz is seeking a judgment in excess of $150,000 and damages of more than $30,000 but less than $150,000, plus costs and other relief the court deems just.

He will be represented by William E. Miller III of Alton.

St. Clair County Circuit Court case number: 10-L-155.

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