Police officers sued for negligence in high-speed chase accident

Kyle Barnett Dec. 28, 2011, 12:00pm

A New Orleans woman is suing the City of New Orleans other associated parties for injuries she received from a collision that occurred during a high-speed chase.

Daria Youngblood filed suit against the City of New Orleans and its insurers, Officer Justin Ferris, Sergeant Ronald Dassel and Eugene Augustine, the man who crashed into the vehicle in which she was riding, in the Orleans Parish Civil District Court on Dec. 20.

Youngblood claims she received injuries from the defendants during an accident in which Augustine was being chased for allegedly dealing drugs by New Orleans Police when he crashed into a car driven by her friend Mariah Woods who died in the accident.

The plaintiff alleges Officer Ferris was reckless and disregarded policy when he ran several stop signs during the chase that began near the intersection of Freret and Milan. Ferris is also alleged to have lied about driving the wrong way down a one-way street during the pursuit. The case asserts Sergeant Dassel is also named because he had the authority to terminate the chase, but did not.

Youngblood's injuries include multiple fractures, broken bones and brain injuries that require extensive medical treatment. An unspecified amount in damages is sought to cover mental anguish, pain and suffering and all related medical expenses.

Youngblood is represented by New Orleans-based attorney C. Michael Winters.

The case has been assigned to Division E Judge Madeleine M. Landrieu.

Case number 2011-13058

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