Trial over woman's auto accident injuries in Mudge's courtroom

Christina Stueve Jun. 11, 2012, 12:39pm


A trial started Monday in Madison County Circuit Judge William Mudge's courtroom, involving an Edwardsville woman's case against a St. Louis man following an accident the two were involved in Nov. 9, 2010.

Rebecca Lanter, 50, claims her neck, shoulder and low back were injured after her vehicle was rear-ended by Gary Taylor's small car.

Lanter was westbound on Rock Road at the intersection of Illinois Route 3 in Granite City, where the accident occurred.

"She has never had prior neck, head or back problems," plaintiff's attorney Kristina D. Cooksey told the jury. "Life changed for her after the accident."

Cooksey said Lanter can't carry laundry baskets like she used to.

Lanter, who has a master's degree in social work from St. Louis University, works for Chestnut Health Systems.

She testified before the jury that Taylor, a firefighter for the city of St. Louis, didn't want her to contact police after the accident.

The impact from the accident was sudden, and her head went forward, she said.

"Things in her car went flying after the impact," Cooksey said. Lanter was later treated at Anderson Hospital Express.

Defense attorney Martin Clay told the jury that there was no dispute that the accident happened, but at no time did Lanter complain of any injury. he said.

"They both went home," Clay said. "She only complained of moderate pain at the ER."

The hospital will always provide instructions on back and neck complaints, Clay said.

"The next thing is that seven days later, she had gone to her attorneys' office," he said.

In her suit, Lanter also claims she suffered disability, experienced pain, lost money and experienced an impaired earning capacity.

Lanter blames Taylor for causing the collision, saying he drove in a manner that he struck the rear of Taylor's vehicle, failed to properly use his brakes, drove too fast and followed Lanter too closely.

Lanter seeks a judgment of more than $50,000, plus costs.

Madison County District Court case number: 10-L-1215.

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Anderson Hospital
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Maryville, IL 62062

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St. Louis, MO 63103

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