Man Receives Settlement for Accident with Deputy Sheriff
A man seriously injured when a deputy sheriff hit the man’s truck has received a long-awaited settlement in the amount of $500,000. Steven Mistler was driving a truck on County Route 401 near the intersection of Routes 401 and 404 in Westerlo, New York, on the evening of December 3, 2013, when the crash occurred. Albany County Sheriff’s Deputy Ryan D. Cross was new to the position, driving a 2008 Crown Victoria along County Route 404/Bear Swamp Road, en route to a non-emergency call to back up another deputy. While Cross had initially put on his emergency lights to make a U-turn, he did not have on either his lights or sirens on at the time he went through the intersection. Albany County Sheriff Craig Apple explained that Deputy Cross had not realized how close he was to the stop sign after making the U-turn. Cross’ dashboard camera recorded the crash, during which Cross’ car appeared to be traveling at a high rate of speed, according to Mistler’s attorney. Cross slammed into Mistler’s truck from the side, sending the truck rolling into a nearby utility pole. The truck rolled with such force that the utility pole snapped, resulting in serious injuries to Mistler.
Mistler, along with his wife, Tracy, filed suit in November of 2014 against Albany County, the Albany County Sheriff’s Office, Sheriff Craig Apple, and Deputy Cross, alleging negligence on behalf of Cross, as well as negligence on the part of those responsible for hiring and training Cross. The extent of Mistler’s injuries were not made known publicly but were simply classified as “serious.” A county representative stated that the responsibility of the county for Mistler’s injuries was not in dispute. Albany county lawmakers voted on Monday, November 9 to approve that Mistler’s claims be settled for $500,000, which the county representative stated was a median award for the sorts of injuries incurred by Mistler in the crash.