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2nd civil lawsuit tied to 2021 Westport crash may soon be settled

Riot Room Surveillance Westport Crash.jpg
Posted at 5:50 PM, Mar 21, 2023
and last updated 2023-03-21 18:50:45-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A second civil lawsuit tied to the deadly 2021 Westport crash involving a Kansas City, Missouri, Fire Department pumper truck may soon be settled.

In November, the driver of the KCFD pumper truck involved in the crash, the fire union, and the families of the three victims teamed up seeking more than $32 million from the city in a lawsuit.

The lawsuit claimed the KCFD pumper truck driver, Dominic Biscari, initially had legal representation by the city, "but in the weeks that followed, the City reversed its position and withdrew as counsel for Biscari."

The lawsuit also alleges the city previously provided legal counsel to employees including firefighters and "created a pattern and practice."

In response, IAFF Local 42, the fire union, filed a grievance against the city. It claimed failing to provide Biscari with an attorney violated the collective bargaining agreement between the city and union.

During a Kansas City Special Committee for Legal Review on Tuesday, committee members voted to move an ordinance for a settlement out of committee. The proposed ordinance said:

"Approving and authorizing partial settlement of the lawsuit entitled Russell Elwood, et al., v. City of Kansas City, Mo., Case No. 2216-CV26061, to resolve claims brought by the International Association of Firefighters, Local 42."

Committee members spent almost an hour in closed session to talk about the proposed ordinance. That's allowed under state law when discussing legal matters.

No details were released about the settlement. After the committee's vote, it is now expected to go to the full city council in two weeks.