A woman claims she sustained severe and permanent injuries when a driver rear-ended the vehicle in which she rode.

Aleka Stephens filed a lawsuit May 9 in St. Clair County Circuit Court against Lillie Patton.

In her complaint, Stephens claims she rode in a vehicle operated by Shanise Veronica
McDonald on Jan. 13, 2009. The vehicle was traveling south in the outside lane of Route 161 when Patton, who drove a 1997 Chrysler Sebring north on 161, attempted to make a left turn onto Lebanon Road and struck the vehicle in which Stephens rode, according to the complaint.

In addition to her injuries, Stephens suffered mental pain and anguish, incurred medical costs and lost earnings and her earning capacity, the suit states.

Stephens blames Patton for causing the collision, saying she negligently failed to keep her vehicle under proper control, failed to keep a proper lookout and failed to stop in time to avoid a collision. In addition, Patton negligently drove too fast and failed to stop or yield the right-of-way, the complaint says.

In her complaint, Stephens is seeking a judgment of no more than $20,000, plus costs and other relief the court deems just.

Eric M. Rhein of Belleville will be representing her.

St. Clair County Circuit Court case number: 11-SC-119.

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