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Three-car crash earns two settlements for one woman

Alan Scher Zagier//May 14, 2014

Three-car crash earns two settlements for one woman

Alan Scher Zagier//May 14, 2014

A 56-year-old Festus woman injured in a three-car crash in January 2012 received $125,000 in a pair of settlements with her own insurance company and another driver’s insurer.

Bernadette DeCollo was a passenger in a 2006 Chevy sedan driven by her husband when they were struck while waiting at a stoplight at Route A and South Mill Street in Jefferson County, said plaintiff’s attorney Patrick Mickey of Brown & Crouppen.

A Festus police report Mickey provided indicates that the crash was initiated when Shirley Koehler, 76, of Festus attempted a left turn from Route A onto South Mill and was struck by a 2001 Pontiac driven by Lisa Lynne Mitchell, 51, of House Springs. Mitchell was traveling in the opposite direction on Route A. The impact pushed Koehler’s car into the DeCollos’ vehicle, which was idling at the red light on South Mill.

None of the drivers or passengers required medical treatment at the scene, according to the police report, but DeCollo experienced neck, back and shoulder pain “almost immediately after the crash,” Mickey said. She underwent surgery for a torn tendon in her right shoulder eight months later.

The settlement consisted of $100,000 from The Hartford, Koehler’s insurer, as well as $25,000 from DeCollo’s own underinsured motorists’ coverage from State Farm. Mickey provided copies of the cancelled checks as confirmation of payment.

$125,000 settlement

Motor vehicle collision 

Venue: Jefferson County Circuit Court

Case number/Date: Not filed/Dec. 31, 2013

Insurer: The Hartford (for Koehler); State Farm Insurance (for DeCollo)

Caption: Bernadette DeCollo v. Shirley Koehler

Plaintiff’s attorney: Patrick Mickey, Brown & Crouppen, St. Louis

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