The Herald, Sharon, Pa.

February 3, 2014

News briefs from Feb. 3, 2014

Herald staff

- — Judge OKs settlement in Coast fatal crash case

COOLSPRING TOWNSHIP – A Mercer County judge recently approved a civil settlement in the traffic death of Samantha L. Coast.

The Mercer County District Attorney’s Office is reviewing whether criminal charges should be filed in the case, District Attorney Robert G. Kochems said.

Samantha, 17, of 274 Jackson Center Polk Road, Worth Township, was killed in the crash. She was a passenger in a car driven by William J. Cupic, 18, of 1508 Lake Road, Jefferson Township.

Samantha’s parents, Timothy J and Crystal L. Coast, administrator of her estate, hired a law firm to investigate the accident, which concluded Cupic was “the only liable defendant in this case,” according to the petition for settlement.

The crash occurred at 5:53 p.m. July 26 on Route 62, just east of Coolspring Church Road, Coolspring Township, when Cupic lost control of Samantha’s parents’ southbound car on the wet roadway.

Two pickups were northbound and the Cupic-Coast car spun into the driver’s side of one of them and the front end of the other, state police said.

Cupic’s insurance carriers offered to settle any dispute for their policy limits, $100,000 from Erie Insurance and $15,000 from Progressive.

Mercer County Common Pleas Court Judge Robert G. Yeatts on Jan. 21 approved a settlement for wrongful death and survival claims with $76,667 going to Samantha’s parents, and $38,33 to Conlon Tarker P.C.

Jury awards plaintiff less then she sought

SOUTH PYMATUNING TOWNSHIP – A Sharpsville woman was awarded some money from a jury in a lawsuit against her ex-landlord and property manager, but not as much as she had hoped.

The jury on Jan. 23 agreed April Rosa, 309 Canterbury Court, was due money from John Hawthorne, Lynnwood, Wash., and Keith Sloan, 2235 Shadow Drive, South Pymatuning Township, but awarded her only $2,605.

In settlement negotiations, Rosa had sought $16,000, while the defendants offered $4,000.

Rosa was living at Hawthorne’s property at 2069 Buckeye Drive, South Pymatuning Township, when she fell on front steps Nov. 7, 2005.

Rosa suffered injuries to an ankle, which required surgery, and other parts of her body, and accused the defendants with negligence for not having hand rails or a slip-resistant surface.

The jury found that Rosa’s own negligence contributed to her injuries.