St. Paul approves $124,000 settlement in woman's fall

  • Article by: JIM ANDERSON , Star Tribune
  • Updated: June 25, 2014 - 9:13 PM

No liability was admitted in 2011 trip-and-fall case.

The St. Paul City Council on Wednesday approved a $124,000 settlement for a woman from Lake City, Minn., injured when she tripped over a snow-covered stump along a downtown sidewalk 2½ years ago.

The city has denied liability in the Dec. 21, 2011, fall taken by 69-year-old Judith Steffenhagen. The settlement, however, covers extensive medical bills that resulted from the incident and ends any further claims, along with closing civil proceedings filed against the city, said Sara Grewing, the city attorney.

Steffenhagen’s lawsuit claims she had “suffered great mental and physical pain and anguish” after she tripped over the 3-inch stump, which was covered in a light dusting of snow and contained in a shallow circular well in the 400 block of St. Peter Street near N. Washington Street.

The city last month reached a $42,000 settlement with a man who said his vehicle was unreasonably searched by a police officer. In April, the city also paid $45,000 to settle a lawsuit claiming that police officers assaulted another man who had called for help, performed an illegal search of his apartment and left him with post-traumatic stress disorder.

In March, the City Council approved a record $1 million settlement between the city and the families of two boys killed and one boy injured in a landslide at Lilydale Regional Park last year.

Jim Anderson

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