Brain injury leads to lawsuit

RCMP told reporters driver made 'no attempt to slow down' for red light on Fortune Drive

Cam Fortems / Kamloops Daily News
February 5, 2013 01:00 AM

An 85-year-old man faces a lawsuit and has been charged under the Motor Vehicle Act in wake of an accident in September that left a woman with a severe brain injury.

The driver, Merle Michels, is named in a civil suit by plaintiff Chloe Demers, who is listed on court documents as a "person under disability." The 20-year-old is being represented by her father, who was appointed to represent her affairs by a B.C. Supreme Court order in November.

Michels appeared in court in December, when he registered his intention to plead guilty to driving without due care and attention.

In the aftermath of the Sept. 7 accident, RCMP told reporters the driver made "no attempt to slow down" for a red light as he drove northbound on Fortune Drive.

According to court documents, Demers was walking across Fortune Drive in the crosswalk when Michels' Pontiac ran a red light at the intersection of Fortune, Leigh Road and Fort Avenue in North Kamloops.

RCMP reported in September that Demers was put into a medically induced coma following the crash.

Among injuries to Demers alleged in the lawsuit are a "severe traumatic brain injury, blown pupil, seizures and post-traumatic stress syndrome."

The statement claims that Demers "is less able to manage all aspects of family living" and must rely on family members.

In a recent provincial court appearance, prosecutor Stephen Lawhead called Demers's injuries "catastrophic."

It's expected Michels will appear in court next on Thursday.

© Copyright 2015 Kamloops Daily News

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