Courts & Crime

Alaska town agrees to settlement in high-speed chase case

WASILLA, Alaska — The City of Wasilla has agreed to pay $100,000 to settle a lawsuit filed last year by a woman injured during a high-speed police pursuit of a drunk driver.

In August 2006, Jennifer Setters was driving the Glenn Highway home to Wasilla when a red pickup driven by 35-year-old Martha Harper with patrol cars in pursuit swerved across the median and smashed into Setters' Ford Expedition near the Knik River bridge.

Setters claimed police violated the city's pursuit policy and partially caused the accident in which she suffered broken ribs and ankle, a concussion and back and neck injuries that have left her unable to work. She underwent ankle surgery, as well as months of physical therapy for back problems that didn't go away or got worse, court documents say.

The settlement was filed just a few weeks before the case was set to go to trial in Anchorage Superior Court.

Wasilla's decision to settle doesn't mean the city is taking any blame for what happened, city representatives said.

The city's insurance company decided it would be cheaper than going to trial, Wasilla Mayor Verne Rupright said.

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