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La Cañada settles with family in runaway truck crash

January 26, 2012

A $50,000 settlement between the city of La Cañada Flintridge and the family of the victims who died in a runaway truck crash on Angeles Crest Highway in 2009 is expected to be formalized, according a lawyer involved with the case.

Scott Grossberg, an attorney for the California Joint Powers Insurance Authority — of which La Cañada is a member — said they had decided to settle the wrongful death lawsuit filed by the family of Angel Posca and his 12-year-old daughter Angelina, who died April 1, 2009, when their car was struck on Foothill Boulevard by an out-of-control big rig coming down the Angeles Crest Highway.

The truck driver, Marcos Costa, was convicted in July of involuntary manslaughter, gross vehicular manslaughter and reckless driving for the crash in which his big rig, having lost its brakes during the steep Crest descent, slammed into the Posca’s car, killing them both.

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Costa was sentenced in September to seven years and four months in prison, but due to time already served, could end up serving less than three years.

The Posca family has already settled their wrongful death lawsuits with the California Department of Transportation for $2.25 million and with Costa for $900,000.

In the latest settlement agreement, the first $30,000 will be paid by the city, with the remaining $20,000 payment shared by the membership of the authority, City Manager Mark Alexander said.

The city’s settlement was based on a calculation against the further costs of defending the case, not on any admission of blame on the part of the city, Grossberg said.

Steres called the settlement a “a minimal payment” to resolve the issue for the city.

“The city is pleased to have resolved this and have it behind it,” he said.

Caltrans attorney Christopher Hiddleson said that the Posca family’s case was now fully settled out of court, leaving only some minor claims against Caltrans from other parties.

The Poscas’ attorney, Chris Aitken, did not respond to requests for comment.

-- Daniel Siegal, Times Community News

Twitter: @ValleySunDan

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