While traveling on the interstate, most motorists wouldn’t expect another vehicle to suddenly strike the rear of their vehicle.
After all, the open stretch of roadway is predominantly flat and absent of traffic signals. A lawsuit has been filed against two Platte City men who were in a pickup that struck the rear of the vehicle in front of them this past summer.
According to the 10-page lawsuit filed Friday, Logan Kingery, 23, was driving a 2008 Ford F150 in the northbound lanes of Interstate 435 near mile marker 27, when he collided with the rear of a 2014 Ford Explorer. The two-vehicle collision occurred at about 9:30 a.m. on Aug. 10.
Logan, the lawsuit says, was driving in an intoxicated state when he caused the high-speed collision that injured Stacy Leonard, 47, Shawn Leonard, 48, and Christian Leonard, 21, all of Parkville.
Stacy, the driver of the Ford Explorer, was taken by ambulance to the North Kansas City Hospital, where surgeons went to work right away attempting to repair “a crush injury to her left hand and wrist that resulted in fractures to nearly all, if not all, of the bones in her upper left extremity.”
According to court documents, the severity of Stacy’s injury was so severe that surgeons recommended she be transferred to the University of Kansas Medical Center, where she could be treated by an orthopedic hand specialist to achieve the best possible outcome. Despite multiple surgical procedures to restore some use of her hand and wrist, Stacy has “lost the complete use of her left hand and wrist to date,” the case says.
As the lawsuit tells it, “Stacy Leonard has been forced to consume narcotics and other types of medicines in an attempt to relieve the unrelenting pain from which she suffers. She has lost her natural rest and sleep and lost all of her income from her employment,” wrote Stephen Mowry of the Von Erdmannsdorff, Mowry and Bartlett law firm.
The lawsuit says Stacy will continue to face many challenges ahead, including physical restoration and lost income.
Shawn Leonard, Stacy’s husband, and their 21-year-old son, Christian, also sustained serious and long-term physical injuries, the suit says.
Shawn “sustained soft tissue injuries to his cervical, thoracic and lumbar regions of his body, the suit points out. Christian was diagnosed with soft tissue injuries to his neck and treated for an aggravated preexisting epileptic disorder.
At the time of the collision, Logan had a high blood alcohol level that drastically impaired his driving ability and reduced his reaction time, the lawsuit says.
“His driving on the public interstate while highly intoxicated and at that rate of speed demonstrated a wanton disregard for the safety and welfare of others,” the suit contends.
Attorneys have also listed Richard Kingery, 47, a passenger inside Logan’s vehicle, as a defendant in this case. Richard should have been well aware of Logan’s drunkenness or ineptitude “by reason of habitual recklessness,” but allowed him to operate a vehicle, the suit claims.
The Leonard family is seeking more than $25,000 in compensation.