A former Central Connecticut State University nursing student who suffered neck, shoulder and back injuries after being hit by a vehicle while walking in the college’s parking garage in January 2015 has settled her personal injury case for $250,000.
Heidi Holt, now 24, was struck by a car driven by then-student Geoffrey Haller in the university’s Welte Parking Garage, according to a lawsuit filed this past January in New Britain Superior Court. Holt, who was forced to withdraw from school due to her injuries, was walking in the garage when Haller’s vehicle struck her, knocking her down onto concrete, said her attorney, Frank McCoy Jr. of McCoy & McCoy in Hartford.
Attorneys for Haller and State Auto Insurance made liability an issue until Haller gave his deposition, in which he admitted he had been looking for a parking spot at the time of the incident and did not see Holt until his car struck her, McCoy said Thursday.
“After the deposition, the liability issue on the part of my client was removed,” McCoy said. “The inference from his deposition was that he was not watching where he was going.”
Holt suffered injuries to her neck, shoulder, back, ribs, hip and feet, McCoy said. Holt, of New Britain, had right hip surgery and several lower back epidural injections to ease pain, McCoy said.
“She has not recovered well,” McCoy added, saying Holt “is in pain right to this day.”
The defense offered $175,000 after Haller’s deposition, McCoy said, upping their offer to $220,000 before agreeing on the driver’s $250,000 maximum.
The case was settled March 30.
McCoy said the injuries forced Holt to drop out of school her junior year.
He said his client was happy to avoid trial, and now just wants to move on with her life. Trial had been slated to begin next month.
“She is definitely glad to have this over with,” McCoy said. “It is not only difficult to live with a serious injury, but to go through the litigation process can be very hard on people.”
Holt incurred about $74,000 in medical expenses, all of which was paid by insurance.
Haller and State Auto were represented by Reshona George of the Law Office of Keith McCabe in Hartford. George declined to comment Thursday.