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FOCUS: ORANGE COUNTY COMMUNITY NEWS | NEWPORT/COSTA
MESA/IRVINE: NEWPORT BEACH

Homeowners Group, City Are Cleared in Fatality

September 11, 1998|STEVE CARNEY

A jury ruled that neither the city nor the Eastbluff Homeowners Assn. is liable in the death of a woman killed two years ago when another driver ran a red light and struck her car.

Tracy Wolonsky, 35, was driving on Bison Avenue the morning of May 4, 1996, when an Irvine man ran the light at Jamboree Road, police said. Wolonsky died at the scene.

Her husband, Karl Wolonsky, filed a lawsuit seeking up to $13 million that alleged the intersection was unsafe, and that the city and the homeowners association were responsible.

Although a Superior Court jury on Wednesday ruled unanimously that the intersection is dangerous, it found by a 9-3 vote that the other driver was responsible for Wolonsky's death.

Chris Woodward, Karl Wolonsky's attorney, said the jury determined that "it was a dangerous condition, but somehow that dangerous condition didn't contribute to her death. It was bewildering to us, but that happens sometimes." He said the family will consider an appeal.

Mayor Thomas C. Edwards said: "The case was rendered and the jury spoke, and I think it was a good decision."

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