Loose Lips

Updated! Eleanor Holmes Norton Sues City Over Fender Bender

The District's lone (non-voting) representative in Congress is suing the city government over a fender bender.

Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton—or more accurately, her insurance company Allstate—says the District needs to pony up $5,800 to cover the repairs to Norton's 2011 Ford Fusion Hybrid. The repairs were needed as a result of a collision at the intersection of North Carolina Avenue and 8th Street SE with a police cruiser last summer.

According to Norton's lawsuit, which was filed late last month by Allstate on Norton's behalf, the cop caused the accident by speeding through a red light in a negligent fashion. But according to a copy of the traffic crash report filed by the Metropolitan Police Department, it was Norton's fault for not yielding to a police vehicle that had its lights and sirens on while responding to an emergency call.

Norton told the Post last year that she didn't hear any sirens before the collision. “I certainly didn’t hear him come, or I would have stopped,” she told the paper. The police report cites a witness saying the police car had its lights and sirens on.

Hmm, sounds like a real whodunit. LL's reached out to Norton for a comment and will update as needed.

Update: Norton's spokesman Abe Rakov says this is all one big mistake. He says:

Congresswoman Norton learned from a press report today that her insurance company had filed a lawsuit against the city for $5,800 over a July traffic accident involving her vehicle. However, prior to filing the suit, the insurance company called to seek authorization and was advised not to sue. The Congresswoman believes that the suit must have been filed in error and has been assured that it will be withdrawn.

Read the lawsuit after the jump:

[scribd id=78658732 key=key-1fe5sjjp2e0ny2z6ces6 mode=list]

Photo by Darrow Montgomery

  • brightwood35

    How is this news??? Insurance companies always try to sue the other party.

  • Mac Hansbrough

    I live at the corner of 8th and North Carolina,SE.I heard the police siren and then the crash.I went to the window to see the Norton car(did not know it was her)and the police car.It seems strange to me that Norton would sue the DC taxpayers to repair her car which the taxpayers pay for to begin with.Typical.

  • Ward 6 Resident

    Knowing Ms. Norton, did she take a blood test for alcohol levels? I suspect she may have been driving while under the influence. She is known to enjoy her wine.

  • Barrie Daneker

    @Mac Hansbrough--Rep Norton owns her car not the city or the Federal government! WTF are you on some type of mind altering drugs. Furthermore, every insurance company will sue no matter what if a question of who is at fault is in question!

  • Bill

    No insurance company asks its insured for "permission" to file a claim to recover a loss. If the insurance company paid its insured on a claim where the other driver was at fault, it is going to file suit in the insured's name to the use of the insurer. If they are withdrawing the suit, it's because they can't prove the officer was liable, which the evidence cited seems to support.

  • truth hurts

    Bill is right. The insured is required by the terms of the ins policy to cooperate with the ins company. So if Allstate paid for Norton's property damage, it had the right to seek indemnification from the at fault party (assuming it wasn't Norton's fault). But, if the insured is even partially negligent, the primary at fault party (assuming it was DC employee) pays nothing. In short, contributory negligence is a complete bar to recovery in the District.

    From the description of this case, it sounds like neither party could recover from the other. Moreover, one must prove gross negligence when an emergency vehicle has its emergency lights/sirens activated.

  • http://ward3dc.com WardthreeDC

    If the fact's pan out that the police car was inroute to an emergency it would seem that Rep Norton has filed a false insurance claim. So!!!! of course she is not in favor of a law suit as the duplicity of her actions would uncovered and laid bare for all to see.

  • StrangeFruit

    DC's Black politicians can't sit or shit without it being construed by this rag, and other media sources, as sinister.

  • Pingback: Norton Sues City Over Fender Bender at sugarbowl.hoops227.us

  • Dorian Wilson

    In Virginia (as, I believe, in most states), police are allowed to run red lights, with lights and siren activated...but--and here's the issue--they MUST slow to 5 mph in doing so. If the cop ran the light without slowing down (which many are wont to do), and Ms. Norton didn't yield for him...it sounds like a wash. Both wrong.

  • Pingback: Eleanor Holmes Norton Sues City Over Fender Bender at sugarbowl.hoops227.us

  • SISM16


  • Pingback: Eleanor Holmes Norton sues city over fender bender | The Grio

  • http://www.cashadvancemn.us/toms-shoes-sale-c-8.html toms shoes sale