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Louisiana city being sued after officer-involved car accident

Police officers are only allowed to break traffic laws under certain circumstances. For instance, running red lights is authorized with lights and sirens, but officers are still obligated to make sure that the intersection is clear before proceeding in order to avoid a car accident. If an officer is simply on patrol and not responding to a call, he or she must follow the same rules as every other Louisiana driver.

A man claims that a police officer employed by a city here in Louisiana ran into his vehicle after failing to follow the rules of the road. He alleges that he was traveling through an intersection when the officer's patrol car ran into him. Further, he says that he had the green light and that the officer's light was red.

The victim says that the impact was hard enough to knock him unconscious. In addition to head injuries, he suffered injuries to the lumbar region of his back and one of his knees. He accuses the Gretna police officer of failing to obey traffic laws, failure to pay attention to the traffic and failing to meet standards set for police officers. The lawsuit also names the City of Gretna, which employs the officer.

It will be up to a Louisiana civil court to determine whether the officer was at fault for the car accident. As would be the case in any other personal injury claim, it is necessary to establish negligence before an award of damages can be considered. If it is determined that the officer was negligent, both the officer and his employer could be responsible for paying monetary damages.

Source: The Louisiana Record, "Gretna police officer accused of running red light and causing accident, injuring man", Kyle Barnett, May 22, 2015