WICHITA, Kan. - Officer Brian Arterburn has filed a lawsuit against a Wichita car dealership for the injuries he suffered when he was struck by a suspect in February of 2017 in South Wichita.
The suit was filed against Eddy's Chevrolet Cadillac on behalf of Arterburn and his wife. The lawsuit says that the vehicle that struck Arterburn was stolen from the dealership, along with two dealer tags.
That theft took place in December of 2016. However, the lawsuit alleges that the dealership did not report the SUV and tags stolen until the day Arterburn was hit by the suspect.
According to the lawsuit:
"Eddy’s Chevrolet failed to secure its inventory, failed to promptly report the stolen Tahoe, and failed to establish and enforce safeguards to prevent vehicle thefts. Further, the lawsuit claims Eddy’s Chevrolet violated its duty to ensure its vehicle was not furnished to a reckless or incompetent driver. The lawsuit also alleges that Eddy’s Chevrolet’s principals and agents knew, or should have known, that there is a strong correlation between automobile thefts and automobile accidents, yet failed to act on this knowledge."
Our news partners at KWCH 12 spoke with Arterburn's attorney who says they want to know how the dealership failed to notice the 2016 Chevy Tahoe was missing until police questioned them about it two months later. Mark Hutton, a principal and co-founder of the Hutton and Hutton Law Firm, told KWCH 12 the purpose behind filing the lawsuit.
“Of course, this case is partially about seeking monetary compensation. Officer Arterburn has a family he can no longer support, and his future care costs are mind-boggling. But money will never restore their lives. The Arterburns also need peace of mind, and to understand how and why this life-altering event was allowed to occur," he says.
“For over a year, Officer Arterburn’s bravery and fight for survival have captured the attention and hearts of this community. In November, Wichita welcomed him home. Now, it is our privilege to represent Officer Arterburn as his struggle continues.” says Hutton.