The estate and parents of a sunbather who died after being run over by a city Parks truck in May have filed claims against the city and city employees totaling $750,000.The claims by the estate of the victim, Karen Remington, and her parents, Ron and Rose Remington, are a precursor to a lawsuit, and each represents the maximum $250,000 under state law that can be sought against a municipality or employees from an incident involving a motor vehicle.The claims, dated Aug. 28, name the city, Parks Director Kevin Briski, the driver and two others in the truck that struck Remington, and the direct supervisor of those in the truck.The city has 120 days to accept the claims, negotiate a settlement or deny them. If the city denies the claims, the Remington’s have six months to file a lawsuit, said attorney Erik Monson, who is representing the estate and family.
Monson declined comment on specifics due to possible litigation.City Attorney Michael May could not be reached for comment Thursday.
Madison police are still investigating the incident, spokesman Joel DeSpain said. The Parks Division is awaiting the police investigation to complete an internal review to see if safety protocols need revision, spokeswoman Laura Whitmore said.Karen Remington, 38, of Windsor, was run over by the truck around noon on May 23 while she was sunbathing at James Madison Park on the south shore of Lake Mendota.Remington spent nine days at UW Hospital and expressed fear to family she would die, be paralyzed or be unable to have children. She died on June 1 as the result of a complication of two surgeries made necessary by the accident.
Remington was lying face down sunbathing along with many others sunbathing or napping in the grass at the parkThe city truck was parked on the east side of the park, and around noon three employees who had been working there used it to drive to the other side of the park to eat lunch in a parking lot.Rather than walk or use Gorham Street, the road near the park, the employees drove the truck across the grass where people were sunbathing, napping, eating lunch or playing. No one got out of the truck or walked ahead to ensure the path was clear.The driver, Kelsey Johnson, never got training in the safe handling, control or operation of a large dump truck. Ashley Marshall was a passenger and William Simmons rode in the bed.
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