Mother sues City of Madison and officer following police pursuit

By Molly English-Bowers | Dec 9, 2015

An Illinois woman, on behalf of herself and her minor son, is suing the City of Madison and a police officer after the driver of the car her son was riding in crashed during a police pursuit. 

Sheila Brawley, mother and next friend of Rhykeem D. Samuels, a minor, filed the four-count lawsuit Nov. 11 in Madison County Circuit Court against the City of Madison and J.D. Harris, an employee of the city. 

According to the complaint, on Oct. 15, Harris observed a vehicle in which Brawley's minor was a passenger driving at a speed he believed to be above the legal limit. He began pursuit, which ended when the driver of the vehicle being pursued crossed the median of state Route 203, resulting in a head-on collision with a third vehicle, the suit says.

The lawsuit alleges the defendants should have known their negligent and careless acts would result in severe injury. As a result, Samuels was seriously and permanently injured, the suit says, and he remains in intensive care with a brain injury, multiple bone fractures, a tracheotomy and a collapsed lung.

The suit alleges both plaintiffs have incurred multiple medical expenses and expect to do so in the future. 

Brawley and Samuels seek $50,000 from both defendants. They are represented by attorney Bruce E. Mattea of The Mattea Law Firm of Collinsville.

Madison County Circuit Court case number 15-L-1505.

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