A passenger claims the City of East St. Louis failed to replace a stop sign after it was stolen, causing her to suffer injuries from a collision.
Melva Hodges filed the lawsuit on March 29 in the St. Clair County Circuit Court against the City of East St. Louis and Marcus Stewart.
According to the complaint, Hodges claims Stewart was driving a 2006 Chevy Impala on July 4, 2015, while she was a passenger in a 2007 Chevy Impala. Both parties allegedly approached the intersection of Trendley Avenue and 14th Street in East St. Louis. Hodges alleges Stewart wrongfully entered the intersection and struck the vehicle in which Hodges was riding.
Hodges alleges the driver of the car she was in proceeded into the intersection without stopping because the stop sign that was under the care and control of the City of East St. Louis was missing. The stop sign was initially there for north-bound drivers, but it was never replaced after it had allegedly been stolen.
Hodges claims the sign has been missing for “a sufficient period of time,” and the defendant should have noticed its absence through road maintenance or police patrols.
Hodges alleges Stewart negligently failed to operate his vehicle in a safe and proper manner, failed to keep a proper lookout, failed to keep his vehicle under control to avoid a collision, failed to obey a stop sign before proceeding into an intersection, proceeded at a speed that was greater than reasonable and proper and failed to decrease his speed to avoid a collision.
Hodges alleges the City of East St. Louis negligently failed to exercise ordinary care to maintain the intersection, failed to have a reasonable inspection system of signs and traffic control devices, failed to maintain the stop sign in a legible manner, failed to discovery that the sign was missing, failed to replace the sign, failed to erect the stop sign to prevent removal by vandals, failed to warn the plaintiff of the dangerous condition and failed to provide an intersection that is reasonably safe for northbound traffic.
As a result, Hodges claims she was severely and permanently injured, disabled and disfigured.
She seeks a judgment of more than $50,000, plus court costs.
Hodges is represented by John Hipskind and Brady McAninch of Hipskind & McAninch LLC in Belleville.
St. Clair County Circuit Court case number 16-L-176