A man blames a convenience store for causing the injuries he sustained in a collision that occurred when a 19-year-old allegedly intoxicated driver struck a tree after drinking alcohol purchased from the store.

Darnell Thomas filed a lawsuit March 6 in the St. Clair County Circuit Court against Ninal Simon, doing business as Route 3 Fuel and Food, and Bobby Simon.

In his complaint, Thomas alleges he rode in a 1999 Mazda Millenia, which 19-year-old Harvey Tippler was driving north on St. Martin Drive at its intersection with St. Matthew Court in Cahokia on June 20. Suddenly, Tippler’s vehicle left the road and struck a tree, according to the complaint.

Just before the collision, Tippler bought alcohol at Route 3 Fuel and Food, the suit states.

Because of the collision, Thomas sustained severe and permanent injuries, experienced severe pain and suffering and was hindered and prevented from attending to his usual duties and affairs, the complaint says. He also claims he lost money and incurred medical costs.

Thomas is seeking a judgment of more than $50,000, plus costs and other relief the court deems just.

He is being represented by Patricia A. Zimmer of Ripplinger and Zimmer in Belleville.

St. Clair County Circuit Court case number 14-L-199.

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