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San Diego paying $125K to woman injured in 2016 collision with police car

San Diego City Council will pay a woman who suffered significant injuries after a police cruiser collided into her while riding a motorcycle

David Garrick
The San Diego Union-Tribune

SAN DIEGO — The San Diego City Council is scheduled to approve a $125,000 payout on Tuesday to a woman who suffered significant injuries when a police patrol car collided into her while she was riding a motorcycle in downtown’s East Village two years ago.

Valerie Brown, 29, continues to meet with doctors and pain experts about injuries she suffered to her left foot, left shoulder, both knees, right hip and left hand, according to court documents.

Attorneys for the city agreed months ago that San Diego must compensate Brown for her injuries because she was hit by city police Officer Anthony David Kitchen while Kitchen was acting within the scope of his employment.

A jury trial had been scheduled, however, to determine the nature and extent of her injuries and to resolve any disputes related to her medical treatment.

In a lawsuit she filed in May 2017, Brown contends the collision in August 2016 has cost her wages, lost use of her property, lost earning capacity and medical expenses.

The settlement agreement the council is scheduled to approve Tuesday will eliminate the need for a trial. The council approved the agreement in November during a session closed to the public.

The collision occurred at F and 14th streets near Police Department headquarters a few blocks north.

While Kitchen was turning left from a westbound lane of F Street onto southbound 14th Street, he collided with the motorcycle in a lane of F Street.

After the collision, Kitchens briefly left the department for a similar position with the Hemet Police Department in southwest Riverside County in September 2017.

But he returned to San Diego’s police force after one month in Hemet, and then filed a claim in January 2018 that he left Hemet’s force due to rampant corruption including physical abuse of a suspect, evidence destruction and declining to arrest a man because he was the friend of a sergeant.

One goal of the claim Kitchens filed was retaining a $10,000 signing bonus he had received from the city of Hemet.

In the litigation filed by Brown, which was handled by Superior Court Judge Timothy Taylor, attorneys for the city initially claimed that her negligence contributed to the collision and that she didn’t exercise enough care and caution on her motorcycle.

But last summer, attorneys for the city agreed she was entitled to compensation.


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