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Jury awards $10.5 million to family of man killed in 2018 Rogers Park crash during police chase

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A Cook County jury on Tuesday awarded $10.5 million to the family of a 61-year-old man who died after being struck by a drunk driver in Rogers Park during a police chase in 2018.

The jury deliberated for just over three hours before returning a unanimous verdict against the city, according to attorneys with the law firm of Corboy & Demetrio, which represented the estate of Tuong Lam. 

On April 13, 2018, Chicago police officers on patrol saw Jusef Wofford, 32, driving a black GMC Savana at a very slow rate of speed in the 6800 block of North Western Avenue. They slowed down to take a look at the driver, who then sped past them. 

The officers gave chase in an unmarked squad car with lights and sirens activated, according to a police report. During the pursuit, Wofford ran a red light on Kedzie at Devon Avenue, striking Lam’s car.

Lam was extricated from his vehicle and taken to St. Francis Hospital in Evanston, where he died. Attorneys for his family argued the officers initiated the pursuit without first contacting their supervisors by radio.

Wofford pleaded guilty to aggravated DUI resulting in death in August of 2018, court records show.

The city’s law department is reviewing the verdict and assessing its legal options, a spokesperson said in a statement.



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