Family of cyclist hit and killed in downtown Portland reach settlement

PORTLAND, Ore - The family of a cyclist hit and killed by a delivery truck in downtown Portland has settled a lawsuit for $700,000.

Kathryn Rickson was struck on May 16, 2012 as she was riding her bike eastbound on Southwest Madison Street. She was approaching Southwest 3rd Avenue at the same time a delivery truck, driven by Dawayne Eacret, was turning right. Kathryn collided with the truck and died a short time later. Police declined to cite Eacret after investigating. Prosecutors conducted a more thorough investigation but decided against charging Eacret with any crime.

"The police were sort of like, 'well, you know, it's a 50-50 thing, two people were involved," recounted Kathryn's father, Edwin Rickson. "They were very cavalier about it."

The Rickson family decided to file a $1.8 million lawsuit against the company Eacret worked for, Quality Custom Distribution Services, and its parent company, Golden State Foods. Among other claims, the lawsuit alleged Eacret, and a passenger in the truck, failed to be on the lookout for cyclists. Closing arguments were to begin Wednesday in Portland, but both sides reached a settlement before the case got to a jury.

"What we wanted to happen, happened today with her name being vindicated," said Kathryn's mother Rachel Rickson.

The Ricksons hope news of the settlement will convince trucking companies that do business in downtown Portland to educate their drivers about the dangers of right-hook crashes.