Fleeing Driver Ordered to Pay $75 Million after Fatally Striking Musician in St. Charles County

ST CHARLES, Mo. — A St. Charles County jury has awarded the family of Krystofer Batsell, a man who was fatally struck by a driver fleeing from police, $75 million in damages. The tragic incident took place on November 17, 2018, when Aron Richardson, driving a 1998 Dodge Durango at speeds over 100 mph, collided with Batsell’s 2002 Ford Focus along Cedar Glen Drive. This verdict comes as the five-year anniversary of Batsell’s senseless death approaches.

The jury’s deliberation lasted approximately an hour before they reached their decision, which included $50 million in actual damages and an additional $25 million in punitive damages.

Batsell, a talented musician, was making a left-hand turn onto Highway 94 from Cedar Glen Drive at the time of the collision. Richardson ran a red light at Highway 94 and struck Batsell’s car on the driver’s side, resulting in his tragic death. It was revealed that Richardson, who has since been sentenced to a 15-year prison term, was under the influence of methamphetamines and possessing a significant amount of the drug at the time of the incident.

Initially, the family filed a lawsuit against St. Charles County, the pursuing officer, and Richardson. However, the judge excluded the county and the officer from the lawsuit due to laws that protect officers acting in their official capacities. Subsequently, the family filed a separate lawsuit against Richardson alone.

The tragedy highlights the dangers and consequences of high-speed pursuits and the devastating impact they can have on innocent lives. Batsell’s family, represented by attorneys Grant Boyd and J.C. Pleban, expressed their satisfaction in finally having their voices heard through the jury’s verdict.

In conclusion, the jury’s decision to award $75 million in damages to the family of Krystofer Batsell, who was killed by a driver fleeing from police, serves as a reminder of the devastating consequences of reckless actions on innocent lives. This verdict not only provides a sense of justice for the family but also reinforces the need for accountability in high-speed pursuit situations.