Cardoza Sued for $30,000 Related to Auto Crash

Posted July 26, 2011 at 2:58pm

A Maryland man has sued Rep. Dennis Cardoza for $30,000 to cover medical expenses related to an automobile crash with the California Democrat in April 2010, according to a lawsuit filed this month in a Maryland district court.

According to the July 7 complaint, Carlton Powell of Laurel has been “required to expend substantial sums of money for transportation to and from his physicians” and has “expended substantial sums of money for medical care, treatment, attention and related items” after Cardoza “failed to control his vehicle” and operated it “negligently, recklessly, carelessly and in violation of the traffic rules and regulations” of Maryland, where the crash occurred.

A representative from Cardoza’s office dismissed the crash as minor and the lawsuit as baseless. “Congressman Cardoza was involved in a minor fender-bender, but, fortunately, no one was hurt,” a spokesman told Roll Call on Monday. “His insurance company is currently fighting this frivolous lawsuit.”

The attorney representing Powell did not return a request for comment.

The lawsuit, which demands interest and legal costs on top of $30,000 in damages, alleges that Powell required treatment at Laurel Regional Hospital and Contee Emergency Physicians after the April 23, 2010, crash.

Subsequent visits to Greater Laurel Chiropractic were also needed throughout April, May and June of that year, according to the lawsuit.

Though the filing contains few details about the crash, it alleges that Cardoza failed to “maintain a proper lookout” and to “yield the right of way,” which caused Powell to be “thrown violently about the inside of the vehicle” and “sustain serious and painful permanent injuries” to his back, neck and extremities.

Attorneys representing Cardoza and his insurance agency have not yet responded to the filing.