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Cook County OKs $6 million for family of teen hit by car in police chase

Wednesday, January 13, 2016
Chicago Tribune
by Hal Dardick

The Cook County Board on Wednesday agreed to pay $6 million to settle a lawsuit filed by the family of a Dolton teenager who was run over and killed by a car being chased by sheriff's police.

The money will go to the family of Kenyatta Brack Jr., 16, and its law firm, Power Rogers & Smith.

Brack was riding his bicycle in August 2010 on his way to meet his mother off Greenwood Avenue near 154th Street when the car being pursued swerved and struck him, launching him airborne into oncoming traffic.

Sheriff's officers first saw the car speeding on the Bishop Ford Freeway and tried to stop it after it exited, according to sheriff's office accounts at the time. But the car sped off, and attempts by sheriff's deputies and Dolton police to stop the car were not successful. After hitting the teenager, the car sped off.

The village of Dolton also was sued by the family. County officials said Dolton recently settled but could offer no details.

Commissioner Richard Boykin, D-Oak Park, voted against the settlement, saying he believed the family's representation by a firm in which Cook County Board of (Tax) Appeals Commissioner Larry Rogers Jr. is a partner represented a conflict.

Rogers said his father handled the case for the firm.

Commissioner Timothy Schneider, R-Bartlett, also voted against the settlement. He said he agreed with the sheriff's department, which opposed settling and argued that all pursuit rules were followed in the chase. Brack's family contended police violated those rules.

The Cook County state's attorney's office recommended settling the case.

"The main issue was the failure to halt the pursuit," said Commissioner Peter Silvestri, R-Elmwood Park, who voted in favor of making the payment.

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