Kirk Death Case Settled; March Trial Is Cancelled

LOUISA - A wrongful death civil action set for trial at Louisa in March has been settled. Terms of the settlement are confidential, according to John C. Kirk, attorney for Sharon Kirk and the Estate of Joey Kirk, who said, "I can only say that justice was done as far as i tcan be done. Nothing, of course, could compensate for the lost life of this very, very good man and for the suffering his wonderful wife, Sharon, has endured. Joey was a class mate at Sheldon Clark High School of mine and Jeff Hinkle, my co-counsel, and we felt a personal commitment in this matter."

Joey Kirk, an employee of the Martin County School system, was killed on December 14, 2007 when the vehicle in which he was a back seat passenger was struck by a vehicle operated by Richard S. Gussler. The Kirk vehicle was stopped at a red light on US 23 on the south side of Louisa. The driver and another front seat passenger in the Kirk vehicle were injured. Gussler was not injured.

Gussler - a car salesman at Mountain City Ford in Inez - was operating a vehicle allegedly owned by the car dealership. Following the crash, Gussler was indicted and later convicted of manslaughter. The lawsuit on behalf of Joey Kirk was filed against Gussler and the dealership.

Joey Kirk and his wife, Sharon, lived at Inez where he was employed by the Martin County School system.

"Jeff and I are very happy that we were able to settle this matter at mediation and not have to put Sharon through the ordeal of reliving this tragedy at a trial," Kirk said.

A trial was for March 17 in Lawrence Circuit Court.

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