A retired Marine Corps officer has received $1.6 million from the state of New York to settle a personal injury claim arising out of a collision with a New York state trooper’s vehicle. According to court documents, Major Mary-Margaret Smith, a resident of Virginia, was on her bicycle at the intersection of Liberty and Collins Street in Whitney Point on the morning of July 5, 2010, when she was struck by the trooper. The impact of the collision threw her into the cruiser’s windshield, causing head and facial injuries.

Smith filed a lawsuit to recover for her injuries, but defense attorneys argued, based on a police report, that Smith had crossed into the intersection, entering into the path of the state trooper. However, evidence introduced at trial indicated that Smith never went into the intersection. The court concluded that the accident was caused solely by the negligence of the trooper, who has never been named. That evidence showed that the officer was making a left turn, but cut corner short, striking Smith, who was legally on the roadway.

The trial court found in Smith’s favor and that ruling was affirmed in 2014 by the state Appellate Division. Separate proceedings were scheduled for later this year to determine the amount of damages, but the state of New York opted to settle the claim.

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