Motion hearing in case against Imo's and driver continued

By Amelia Flood | Aug 26, 2010


Pending motions in a personal injury case involving a pizza delivery man who was allegedly "more concerned with the timely delivery of a pizza than traffic safety" have been pushed off until October.

Madison County Circuit Judge Andreas Matoesian pushed off the motions for 45 days and set a case management conference in an order signed Aug. 13.

Plaintiff Matthew Bruntjen is suing Imo's Franchising Inc., its Bethalto franchise, Kenneth and Lisa Lyerla of Bethalto, Jeremiah Greene, Jason Yelton, Metro East Distributing Inc. and Leonard Cummings Jr. on nine counts of negligence at $50,000 in damages a piece.

Imo's has moved to dismiss the counts against it.

The plaintiff is suing over injuries he claims to have suffered in an Aug. 17, 2009 accident on Erwin Plegge Boulevard near its intersection with Ashbrook Street in Bethalto.

Bruntjen was a passenger in a van driven by Jeremiah Greene.

Defendant Jason Yelton, owned the van Greene was driving.

That van was allegedly struck by the car driven by Kenneth Lyerla. His mother, Lisa Lyerla owned that car.

Kenneth Lyerla was a pizza delivery man for Bethalto Pizza LLC., the owner of an Imo's Pizza franchise.

The plaintiff claims he was seriously injured and that the injuries included massive head injuries.

His suit alleges that Kenneth Lyerla was speeding, failed to control his vehicle and that he failed to properly stop his vehicle to make a left turn before allowing it to enter the oncoming lane of traffic.

The suit further claims that Kenneth Lyerla was distracted by his cell phone and/or car radio at the time of the accident.

The suit names Bethalto Pizza as Kenneth Lyerla's respondent superior as well as Imo's Franchising.

It also claims Kenneth Lyerla's employers negligently allowed him to drive delivering pizza without first making sure he was capable of driving safely and that it created an environment where the timely delivery of food was more important than public safety.

Lisa Lyerla and Yelton, the owners of the two cars involved in the accident, are named for allegedly allowing others to drive them when they should have known the drivers weren't capable of handling them safely.

Bruntjen also alleges Yelton did not secure the cargo in his vehicle properly.

Bruntjen claims Greene was speeding, distracted by his phone and that he failed to monitor the traffic flow around him.

Metro East Distributing is named as Jason Yelton's employer and respondent superior.

Cummings Jr. is named as a defendant for insuring Lisa Lyerla's car and for allegedly allowing Kenneth Lyerla to drive it without first being instructed in the car's safe handling.

No date is yet set for the motions pending in the suit.

Bruntjen is represented by Charles Armbruster.

Stephen Mudge represents the Lyerlas and Cummings Jr.

James Craney and others represent the pizza company defendants.

John Wendler represents Yelton and Metro East Distributing.

Greene is represented by Beth Boggs.

The case is Madison case number 10-L-577.

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