Vero Beach crash involving pedestrian leads to lawsuit

A Vero Beach resident who was struck and injured by a vehicle while walking in the Central Beach area of the Island is requesting a jury trial after 17 months of negotiations failed to reach an out-of-court settlement with the defendant.

David T. Stowe, 39, filed the trial request on Sept. 20. A trial date has not yet been set. Stowe is seeking in excess of $15,000 for damages, not including costs, interest and attorney fees.

Stowe is suing Joseph F. Lynch, 87, of Vero Beach, who allegedly struck Stowe at about 7:35 p.m., March 30, 2017, while he was walking in the 700 block of Conn Way, according to his court affidavit. He is accusing Lynch of negligently operating and/or maintaining the motor vehicle he was driving.

Stowe is alleging in his complaint that he suffered permanent injury that required hospitalization, medical and nursing care and loss of earnings.

Lynch, who submitted a response to the court on Sept. 25, 2017, acknowledges that the accident did occur. But he denies most of Stowe’s claims.

In his response, Lynch wrote that Stowe’s alleged damages were “caused by or contributed to by the Plaintiff’s own negligence.”

Lynch also accused Stowe of “failing to follow all treatment recommendations of his healthcare providers and/or failing to seek or maintain full-time employment.”

Stowe and Lynch could not be reached for further comment.

According to Vero Beach police reports, investigators determined that Lynch, who was driving a 2016 Black Toyota, failed to yield to right of way to pedestrian, which was Stowe.

Lynch, who pleaded no contest, was ordered on April 25, 2017 to pay a total of $588 in fines and court costs and had his licensed suspended for 3 months.

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