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Cook Co. to pay nearly $1 million to settle lawsuit over crash

Updated: May 30, 2013 1:11AM

Cook County will spend nearly $1 million to settle a lawsuit brought by a man who said he crashed a motorcycle he was driving 13 years ago because he couldn’t see the signs warning him of a T-intersection at the county border.

Kertis Huck, 48, of suburban Frankfort, said he was driving a motorcycle with one passenger June 9, 2000, northbound on Harlem Avenue near Steger Road at the border of Will and Cook counties. He said a stop sign at the intersection of the two roads was turned at an angle and didn’t reflect light properly. Meanwhile, he said the sign warning of a T-intersection was down. Maintenance of the signs was the responsibility of Cook County, John MacInerney, Huck’s lawyer said.

Huck said he drove into a cornfield and suffered major brain injury.

“I’m lucky to be calling you,” Huck said in a phone interview about the settlement. His passenger hurt her ankle.

The Cook County Board approved the $925,000 settlement with Huck and his wife during its Wednesday meeting. Huck said he was unhappy it took 13 years to resolve the lawsuit.

MacInerney said there was evidence the sign marking the T-intersection had been knocked down in a prior collision, and he said an officer who looked into Huck’s crash wrecked his car at the same intersection about a month later.

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