Acadian Ambulance Service owes $117 million to a woman left paralyzed and brain-damaged when the ambulance she was in crashed into a sugar-cane truck on the way to a hospital in December 2010, an Iberville Parish jury has found.
Company vice president Allyson Pharr says Acadian takes full responsibility for the wreck but will appeal other issues in the verdict handed up last week for Whitley Lacey and the baby born by cesarean section while Lacey was in a coma.
One of Lacey’s attorneys, Tony Clayton, says the 22-year-old woman was unconscious for three months, and could not talk when she regained consciousness. He says she has regained some speech but has a long way to go, can move only one arm and will need 24-hour care for the rest of her life.
She was seven months pregnant when she called for an ambulance.
The jury found that $2.7 million should go for the baby’s health care costs, and $114.3 million for Lacey’s health care costs over the next 50 years. Lacey also has a 4-year-old child, said William Gee III, another of her attorneys.
According to the suit filed in Iberville Parish district court, ambulance driver Michael Averette hit the truck when he bent to pick up a GPS device from the floor.
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