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Jury awards $737,000 to Indiana officer

HAMMOND, Ind. — A Lake County jury has awarded nearly $737,000 in damages to a Hammond police officer who was injured in a 2006 hit-and-run collision while on duty.

Patrolman Keith Thompson Jr. was on foot about 1 a.m. responding to a disturbance call when witnesses said a speeding car struck him and drove off without stopping.

Fifty-one-year-old Rochelle Fritz received an 18-month suspended sentence this year after pleading guilty to misdemeanor criminal charges the included reckless driving.

Fritz continues to maintain she did not hit Thompson and said her attorneys have not decided yet whether to appeal the lawsuit decision.

Thompson suffered a broken leg and three broken toes and returned to full police duty last year after a long period of physical therapy.


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