|By Lawrence Smith|
The West Virginia Record
RIPLEY - A Wirt County businessman is accused of contributing to the wrongful death of a Jackson County woman following an auto accident two years ago.
Timothy Ellison, and his business, Ellison Dozer Service Inc., are named as co-defendants in a two-count wrongful death suit in Jackson Circuit Court.
David Stephens, as administrator of the estate of Sybil L. Stephens, alleges a collision between a vehicle Ellison was driving, and one in which Sybil was a passenger, in 2007, was a direct cause of her death.
According to the complaint filed on Nov. 14, Sybil Stephens was a passenger in a vehicle driven by Joyce Ashby on Oct. 25, 2007.
Though the complaint does not specify the make and model of the vehicle or where precisely the women were on that day, it does say they were driving along W.Va. 21 in Jackson County.
At a time not specified, the suit alleges Ellison collided with the vehicle driven by Ashby. The suit also fails to state what sort of vehicle he was driving, and the direction in which he was traveling along W. Va. 21.
Nevertheless, the suit alleges Ellison was "negligent, careless and/or reckless" of, among other things, "failing to keep a proper lookout ... exceeding a safe speed under the circumstances then existing ... and failing to stop in time to minimize the impact of the collision."
As a result, Edmonds, 90, died.
According to her death certificate, Edmonds died as a result of multiple trauma suffered from a motor vehicle accident which occurred around 10:34 a.m. at the intersection of Sycamore and Church Sts. in Ripley. Her death was ruled accidental.
The suit does not specify what, if anything, happened to Ashby following the accident.
The suit alleges as a result of her death, Stephens' estate has incurred funeral, and related expenses. Also, her survivors have suffered "great sorrow, mental anguish, and have been forever deprived of [her] society, companionship, comfort, kindly offices, advice ... and devotion."
In addition to David Stephens, an Andover, Mass. resident, the suit lists Sybil Stephens' other son, James, her grandsons, Jesse, Matthew and Gregory, granddaughters, Rachel and Rebecca, and sister Eileen Kerwood, as survivors.
The estate seeks unspecified damages, interest, court costs and attorney fees. It is represented by Gerald R. Titus Jr. with the Parkersburg law firm of Palmer and Titus.
The case is assigned to Judge Thomas C. Evans III.