Sunday, May 18, 2003

$750K due for crash blamed on turtle



The Associated Press

AKRON - A woman has been awarded $750,000 by a jury for injuries she received in an auto accident that police say was caused by another driver's fascination with a turtle.

Barbara Gilpin of Stow was seriously injured in June 1998 when a pickup truck driven by Delores Fay collided with her station wagon. Police said Fay initially told officers she was distracted by a pet turtle in her truck and noticed too late that Gilpin's vehicle had stopped to turn.

The 40-year-old Gilpin's injuries included fractured ribs, punctured lungs, and brain and nerve damage. She was in intensive care for two weeks.

The jury in the Summit County Common Pleas Court deliberated only an hour after a three-day trial that ended Thursday.

Since Fay had only $12,500 in liability insurance from Progressive Insurance, the verdict was against Republic Franklin Insurance Co. of Utica, N.Y., which insured Gilpin's husband's company.




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