OAKLAND (CBS SF) — A woman who was involved in a crash with Oakland Mayor Jean Quan in June has filed a lawsuit against Quan and the city seeking unspecified damages.
Lakisha Renee Lovely, a nurses’ assistant in San Francisco, alleges in her suit, which was filed in Alameda County Superior Court on Wednesday, that she sustained severe bodily injury because of Quan’s actions in the collision in West Oakland shortly after 5:30 p.m. on June 8.
Lovely alleges that Quan is guilty of malice and her actions “show a conscious disregard of the rights and safety of others and are contemptible, vile and despicable.”
Quan told reporters the day after the accident that she was driving between two community events in West Oakland when another car struck the left rear tire of her car.
Lovely alleges that Quan was on her cellphone in violation of California law at the time of the accident but Quan said in a statement Thursday, “I was unequivocally not on my phone.”
Oakland police have said that investigators haven’t been able to determine whether cellphones were in use at the time of the collision, either by Quan or Lovely.
Quan said in her statement, “First and foremost, I am grateful that no one was seriously hurt in the crash and am glad to be alive today. The fact is that the back of my vehicle was struck by the other driver with such force that it spun me around.”
The mayor said, “I wish the other driver well and continue to focus on the priorities of the people of Oakland: intervening in street violence, creating strong partnerships with our schools, building affordable housing, and bringing living wage jobs to our residents.”
Quan is facing 14 opponents in her bid to be re-elected in the election next Tuesday.
Quan’s campaign spokesman, Michael Colbruno, said, “I hope this lawsuit’s timing is not politically motivated, and that this issue is not being dredged up in this moment in order to distract voters from the most critical issues that our city is facing which are at the heart of this election: violence is down, jobs are up, and our youth have more hope.”
Colbruno said, “This unnecessary defamation of character is unfortunate. Mayor Quan has served Oakland for over two decades with deep humanity and concern for the well-being of all our residents.”
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