(AP) GREAT FALLS - Insurance companies for the city have paid $6 million to a man who suffered severe head injuries in an accident at Montana ExpoPark in March 2001.
Under the settlement, the parents of Jeremy Parsons, 31, also will receive $700,000.
Parsons was injured when he grabbed a steel beam resting on two concrete posts with both hands and tried to slide under it limbo style. The beam, which was not attached, crushed his skull.
Parsons has brain damage, memory lapses, is functionally blind and must use a wheelchair. It's difficult for him to communicate and he is totally dependent on others for his care.
His parents, Jerome and Kelly Parsons, "have given up every waking moment of their lives to care for their son," said attorney David Slovak.
The engineering firm that built the barrier paid the family $475,000, but the Parsons are seeking a total of $13.5 million, Slovak said.
Jerome and Kelly Parsons are seeking another $8 million in a declaratory judgment. They're asking District Judge Thomas McKittrick to determine the value of their claims and order the insurance companies to pay that amount.
The settlement, approved by the Cascade County Commission on Thursday, ends the Parsons' suit against the city, which managed the fairgrounds at the time.
However, the settlement does not include a claim filed on behalf of Jeremy Parson's daughter, Raeliegh. Negotiations are continuing in that case, said City Manager John Lawton, who noted that three insurance companies, and not city taxpayers, are paying the claim.
Michigan prison escapee hauled into court
(AP) BILLINGS - An escaped convict appeared in Justice Court Thursday, was served with a fugitive warrant from Michigan and returned to jail without bail.
Ervin Brown, 41, a convicted murderer, also was ordered to appear in District Court on Monday.
He was arrested Tuesday on the western edge of the city after a 100 mph chase along Interstate 90 and a brief standoff with Montana Highway Patrol and other law officers.
Michigan officials said Brown escaped from the Mound Correctional Facility in Detroit on Jan. 2. He is accused of stealing a car in South Dakota, stealing weapons from a Buffalo, Wyo., sporting goods store and robbing a Dayton, Wyo., gas station.
The patrol said Brown tried to run over an officer during the chase in Montana and aimed a shotgun at others before he surrendered. Yellowstone County Attorney Dennis Paxinos said he would not file any charges against Brown.
Brown had served 14 years of life sentence for murder, robbery and other charges when he escaped from prison. He told a Yellowstone County detective that after his escape he rode in a railroad freight container for two days as the train headed west, part of an attempt to get to Washington state and then cross the border into Canada.