February 2, 2000 -County settles suit with crash victim; Sheriff's patrol car ran red light; man suffered back injury
County government officials have agreed to pay $100,000 to a former Marine who
suffered a spinal injury after his car was struck by a sheriff's patrol car that
ran a red light while responding to a call in September 1997.
The payment, which was approved by county supervisors yesterday, settles a
civil lawsuit filed against the county by Ronald LeFlore, 25.
LeFlore had been working a second job as a pizza deliveryman the night of the
accident. His back injury cut short his plans for a Marine Corps career and he
received a medical discharge from the military, said LeFlore's attorney, David
Assistant County Counsel Diane Bardsley said sheriff's Deputy Ronald Halstead
was responding to a call for assistance without his lights or siren on when he
drove through a red light at a Vista intersection. Halstead braked and his car
skidded into LeFlore's vehicle.
LeFlore suffered a disc bulge as a result of the crash, Bardsley said.
The county originally rejected a claim filed by LeFlore. But the Board of
Supervisors agreed in closed session to settle the case because it involved
"probable liability," and the settlement was for an amount far less than the
damages being sought, Bardsley said.
LeFlore, who now lives in Georgia and works for a job-placement agency,
recently learned he will not require surgery, Miller said. He still suffers
from lower back pain.
Sheriff's Department spokesman Ron Reina said he could not say whether
Halstead was disciplined as a result of the traffic accident because it was a
In spinal cord injury cases it is essential that measures be taken promptly to preserve evidence, review the medical procedures in question, and to enable physicians or other expert witnesses to thoroughly evaluate the accident record and injuries. If you or a loved one is a victim of spinal cord injury, call now at or CLICK HERE TO SUBMIT A SIMPLE CASE FORM. The initial consultation is free of charge, and if we agree to accept your case, we will work on a contingent fee basis, which means we get paid for our services only if there is a monetary award or recovery of funds. Don't delay! You may have a valid claim and be entitled to compensation for your injuries, but a lawsuit must be filed before the statute of limitations expires.