Find out more →

Get unlimited access. Become a digital member!

Friday, November 16, 2012

Family awarded $2.97 million in trooper crash case

Posted By on Fri, Nov 16, 2012 at 10:56 AM

ANDREW RHEW: His wreck led to $2.97 million award.
  • ANDREW RHEW: His wreck led to $2.97 million award.
The Arkansas Claims Commission has awarded $2.97 million to the family of Vickie Lynn Freemyer, who was killed by a speeding state trooper, Andrew Rhew, who was responding to a call without warning lights or siren and driving 103 miles per hour a second before the crash.

The award against the State Police will be considered for appropriation by the legislature. Norman Hodges, director of the Claims Commission, said a panel of Pat Moran, Richard Mays and H.T. Moore voted unanimously for the award after perhaps five hours of testimony on Thursday. Hodges said he understood the panel assigned about 10 percent of the fault for the accident on Freemyer, but most of the rest to Rhew, who's no longer a member of the State Police.

Freemyer, a Blytheville teacher, pulled out of a restaurant onto a highway through Manila and was hit by Rhew, who was heading to a call in Osceola. Rhew was fired for ignoring operating rules in the wreck, but reinstated by the State Police Commission. Rhew's attorney argued that Freemyer was at fault. Rhew later resigned as a trooper after an arrest for DWI in Missouri. He says that charge was subsequently dismissed.

The claim was brought by Melissa Stewart, one of Freemyer's daughters, as administrator of her estate. Hodges said he believed it was the second-largest personal injury award made by the Claims Commission. He said $6.5 million was awarded several years ago in the case of a child who'd been severely injured by a flying piece of metal from a highway right of way mower.

Bobby Coleman of Blytheville was attorney for the estate. The family earlier had objected to a plea bargain in a criminal case brought against Rhew in which he pleaded no contest to a misdemeanor negligent manslaughter charge with the opportunity to have his record expunged.

Tags: , , , ,

Speaking of...

Comments (6)

Showing 1-6 of 6

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-6 of 6

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

  • Federal hearing underway on Arkanas same-sex marriage bans

    A hearing is underway in federal court today on a lawsuit to invalidate Arkansas's ban on same-sex marriage. It's a separate, but similar, companion to a state court challenge pending before the Arkansas Supreme Court.
    • Nov 20, 2014
  • Lunatics run the asylum: Jonesboro edition

    The Jonesboro City Council put the brakes on a $30,000 grant from a nonprofit organization because several members don't like the politics of a phlanthropist who supports the agency, former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Really.
    • Nov 20, 2014
  • More »

Most Shared

  • The Quapaw return to Arkansas

    Casino try a good bet.
  • The French Hill 'tis better to receive-than-give open line

    An open line that features new Congressman French HIll's antipathy in the Catholic newspaper to Obamacare as a "giveaway" to drug companies and hospitals. A Catholic nurse points out that children and other people in need are the real beneficiaries of this giveaway, along with Catholic hospitals.
  • Fan happiness over Hogs' win over LSU costs UA $25,000 UPDATED

    The University of Arkansas will be fined $25,000 by the SEC because Hog fans stormed the football field after Saturday's victory over LSU snapped a long SEC losing streak. It was a second offense by the UA of the conference's "access to competition area" policy.
  • Jean Gordon to receive Truth Teller award

    Jean Gordon, who's worked a half-century in just about every social justice and peace movement you can name, will receive the Arkansas Community Institute's 2014 Community Truth Teller Award at a program at 5:30 p.m. Thursday at the library's Darragh Center
  • A new political chapter begins in Arkansas

    While there is much more diving into numbers from exit polls and vote tallies from Election 2014 to be done, it is clear that Arkansas's voters went beyond merely turning a page on the state's electoral past and instead created a wholly new chapter. In the process, three distinguishing elements of Arkansas's political tradition — its provincialism, its personalism and its populism — all shifted from the present to past tense in an election that served as the exclamation point for an era of dramatic change in the state's politics.

Most Viewed

Most Recent Comments

Blogroll

 

© 2014 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation