Corboy & Demetrio Obtains Emergency Order Requiring City to Preserve Evidence in Light Pole Fall
Corboy & Demetrio has obtained an Emergency Order of Protection that requires the City of Chicago to preserve evidence in the crashing of a rusted city light pole on Feb. 25, 2020, onto the car of 25-year-old Isabella Keating, who was stopped at a light in the city’s Streeterville neighborhood and suffered a concussion and other injuries.
“This order will allow our firm to investigate if and when the City of Chicago knew the light pole was in danger of falling, and whether it was properly inspected and maintained,” said Michael K. Demetrio, a partner at Corboy & Demetrio, who along with Partner Edward G. Willer, represents Keating.
Cook Co. Judge Allen Price Walker issued the order on March 9, 2020, after Corboy & Demetrio petitioned the court asking for all inspection records for two years leading up to the fall, as well as any video surveillance which may have captured it.
Last week, Corboy & Demetrio filed a lawsuit on behalf of Keating who was just inches from where the pole fell on her car at the intersection of McClurg Court and Illinois Street.
The responding police officers wrote in their report that they observed the light pole base to be extremely rusted.
It’s the second lawsuit Corboy & Demetrio has filed against the City of Chicago in three months, involving a rusted light pole base that resulted in injury. In December, the firm filed a lawsuit on behalf of Maya Kirk, who was walking with co-workers in the Loop on November 21, 2019, when a city light pole fell, striking her and knocking her to the ground. Kirk suffered serious injuries to her head, knee and leg.
Both lawsuits allege the City was negligent because it failed to adequately inspect and maintain the light poles, allowing them to deteriorate. They also allege the City allowed excess and unsafe levels of water and/or debris to accumulate at the base of the light poles, resulting in a dangerous and defective lack of support. In both cases, a decorative cover was attached to the pole with the deteriorating base underneath.
Case info: #2020L2668, Isabella Keating v. City of Chicago, filed on March 4, 2020 in Cook County Circuit Court, Order obtained on March 9, 2020. Kirk v. City of Chicago, 2019L013385, filed on Dec. 5, 2019.