A Jefferson County, AL, judge last week issued a $3.2 million verdict against the City of Birmingham in connection with a March 2020 crash that injured five people during a police chase, AL.com reported.
The lawsuit described the chase as “unauthorized” and was filed on the behalf of two adults and three minors that were injured when their car was struck by Birmingham Police Officer Shatittia Addie while she was pursuing another vehicle.
According to court records, one of the adult plaintiffs was driving the vehicle and was properly crossing Highway 78 at an intersection when the car was struck by Addie. According to the judge’s order, the officer was engaged in an unauthorized high-speed chase.
Video footage of the crash shows that the victims’ vehicle was traveling probably less than five miles per hours at the time of the impact. The officer, records state, was going 70 to 80 miles per hour.
The judge’s order states the officer “negligently failed to seek or obtain authorization for this high-speed chase as required by the applicable policies and regulations of the Birmingham Police Department."
“We expect the city to take the position that the city is capped at $300,000 and the officer is on her own beyond that - that they have no indemnity obligation past $300,000,” the judge explained.