- Alexandra Seltzer Palm Beach Post Staff Writer
City officials have agreed to pay a South Palm Beach couple nearly $50,000 to settle a lawsuit regarding a car crash they were injured in when a former police officer hit them, according to court documents.
The city will settle the lawsuit filed by Seher Sezen, now 31, and her husband Hasan Caliskan, now 34, for $47,000. Regardless of the settlement, the city is not admitting to liability or fault for the wreck, documents say.
The wreck happened in September 2014 about 9:30 p.m. on Federal Highway at Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard. Caliskan was driving, with his wife in the front passenger seat, north on Federal in the left lane. Former Boynton Beach police officer Samuel Gorfido was driving his city-owned Ford sedan south on Federal in the left turn lane.
Gorfido failed to yield to Caliskan when he tried to turn left at the intersection. Gorfido’s front bumper hit Caliskan’s left rear fender, causing the car to hit a pole, according to court documents.
Caliskan, a car salesman, told The Palm Beach Post on Tuesday he had picked his wife up from work in Delray Beach and the two were driving home when the police car “came from nowhere.”
“I was shocked,” he said. “I didn’t know what was going on, it was that bad.”
He said he and his wife, who works at a country club, suffered from lower back and neck pain and spent six months in and out of the hospital. While his wife healed faster, Caliskan said he is still in pain.
The lawsuit, filed July 2015, accuses Gorfido of driving “negligently and carelessly.”
Gorfido worked for the police department from May 2012 to October 2015 when he resigned, according to the Human Resources department.
The City Commission, without discussing it, agreed to the settlement at their Nov. 21 meeting.