Philly cop sues motorist for on-duty vehicle accident

By Jon Campisi | Sep 13, 2011

A Philadelphia police officer who alleges she was injured by a careless driver while she was attempting to help a stranded motorist has filed a personal injury claim against the man she claims struck her vehicle.

Philadelphia attorney Joseph Monaco, of the firm Kane & Silverman, P.C., filed the civil complaint Sept. 9 at the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas on behalf of Karen F. Lee.

The defendant named in the suit is Philadelphia resident Manuel Espinola.

Lee, who resides in Northwest Philadelphia, was working in her capacity as a city cop during the alleged incident.

According to the complaint, Lee was stopped northbound on Route 1 near 15th Street at about midnight Sept. 9, the same day the civil action was filed, attempting to assist a disabled vehicle and its operator when, while inside her patrol car, she was struck by a vehicle traveling northbound on Route 1 operated by defendant Espinola.

As a result of the accident, the lawsuit states, Lee suffered musculoskeletal sprains and strains, disc pathology, radiculopathy, carpal tunnel syndrome, and a severe shock to her nerves and nervous system.

Her injuries have caused Lee to expend various sums of money on medical treatment and have affected her ability to work and carry out her daily physical activities, the suit claims.

Lee has also suffered physical pain, mental anguish and a loss of life’s pleasures, the lawsuit states.

The lawsuit accuses Espinola of negligence for failing to have his vehicle under proper and adequate control, operating his vehicle in a reckless manner and driving at a dangerous rate of speed under the circumstances, failing to observe surrounding traffic conditions and being otherwise careless, reckless and negligent in the management and maintenance of a motor vehicle.

Lee demands judgment against the defendant in a sum in excess of $50,000.

A jury trial has been demanded.

The case number is 110900563.

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