Navy medic sues over ‘career ending’ crash with stolen car
A NAVY medic who likely will be medically discharged due to injuries she suffered as the victim of a hit-and-run crash by a stolen car four years ago, is suing the driver for more than $1m.
Latisha Baker, 39, was riding her Harley Davidson motorbike up the Gillies Range in January 2016 when she was hit by an unregistered Mercedes Benz which crossed on to the wrong side of the road near Lake Eacham.
Ms Baker suffered significant leg injuries, particularly to her right knee, broken ribs and spinal injuries in the crash and spent several months off work.
She was subsequently medically downgraded and the navy's discharge process is expected to begin next February.
Ms Baker said she had planned to stay in the navy until retirement but would now be left "effectively unemployed".
She said she could no longer ride her motorbike, had to quit the Patriots Motorcycle Club and has had to give up the active outdoors lifestyle she previously enjoyed.
"My whole life has been turned upside down and I don't know where I sit or what I can do; I can no longer work in the field I'm qualified for due to injuries - both physical and mental," she said.
"I was an independent woman who didn't need to rely on anyone to do anything; now I have had to adjust to the new me and accept assistance in just about everything and that I will no longer be that independent person I once was.
"Unfortunately, my accident was caused by another vehicle and someone driving dangerously which was out of my control."
Ms Baker has launched legal action in the Cairns Supreme Court against the vehicle's driver Anthony Brian Marsh, 39, for just over $1.175m linked to her past and future economic loss, and medical expenses.
Marsh was criminally charged with multiple offences including dangerous operation of a vehicle, unlicensed, unregistered and uninsured driving and fail to remain over the matter.
He was sentenced to nine months' jail with immediate parole in June 2016.
Ms Baker's solicitor, Ashleigh Harrison from Maurice Blackburn Lawyers, said Ms Baker's injuries were "career ending".
"Ms Baker's life has been completely changed due to the unacceptable and irresponsible behaviour of another road user," she said.
"This is a stark reminder of the need for drivers to pay due care and attention when using the roads as motorcyclists are particularly vulnerable road users."
Originally published as Navy medic sues over 'career ending' crash with stolen car