Serious personal injury lawsuit filed by pedestrian struck while crossing the street. Driver who left the scene was later arrested and faces felony charges as well.
Lawsuit seeks compensation for woman injured on St. Patrick’s Day in Snowmass Village
May 22, 2014. By Andre Salvail via aspentimes.com.
A lawsuit filed in Pitkin County District Court on Tuesday alleges that an Eagle County man struck a pedestrian with his truck in Snowmass Village on March 17 and then fled the scene.
The suit was filed by Aspen attorney Michael Duran, of the law firm Milligan Coughlin, on behalf of Dobbs Ferry, New York, resident Hannah Park, 31.
It claims that the 67-year-old driver, Randall L. Kimmel, of El Jebel, consumed alcohol at the Mountain Dragon restaurant just before hitting Park in the crosswalk of the intersection of Brush Creek and Wood roads at around 7:45 p.m. She had just exited the public bus she took from Aspen, the suit says.
“The defendant engaged in extreme and outrageous conduct when he failed to stop and provide aid to Ms. Park, after striking her with his vehicle,” the suit states.
Park, according to Snowmass Village police reports, was an Aspen resident at the time. The lawsuit and police reports say that Park was severely injured, requiring surgery and hospitalization.
Several people witnessed the accident, according to the suit, which seeks a jury trial and compensation for past and future medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages, loss in future earning capacity, emotional distress and legal costs. March 17 is St. Patrick’s Day, and big crowds visit Snowmass Village for various festivities related to the celebration.
Kimmel faces criminal charges in the matter, as well. The 9th Judicial District Attorney’s Office has charged him with a felony, leaving the scene of an accident involving serious injury, and a misdemeanor, failure to report an accident or return to the scene. The case is ongoing, and Kimmel has yet to enter a plea.
A police report written by Sgt. Brian Olson says that much debris from the truck, a 1988 Dodge Dakota, was collected at the scene. Some of the debris was glued together and later proved to be a match for missing pieces of the truck’s front end, the report says.
“I observed a significant dent in the (truck’s) metal fender at the point of damage consistent with striking something significant,” Olson wrote.
Video of the accident was captured by an exterior camera at the nearby Conoco gas station, Olson’s report states. The next day, another Snowmass policeman spoke with Kimmel, who said, “I don’t really know if I hit anybody,” the report adds.
The lawsuit and police report say that Olson was wearing “earbuds” connected to his Iphone when the accident occurred.
Duran declined comment on the suit Wednesday.
Attorney Greg Greer, of Glenwood Springs, is representing Kimmel on the criminal charges. He did not return a phone message on Wednesday afternoon.