The city of San Diego will pay its former mayor's wife nearly $85,000 for a fall on a damaged sidewalk that ruptured her breast implant in Pacific Beach.
Cynthia Hedgecock sued the city of San Diego after she tripped and fell while walking along on Morrell Street on July 31, 2015. The fall ruptured her breast implant.
Hedgecock, the wife of former San Diego mayor and conservative radio talk-show host Roger Hedgecock, will receive $84,924 after a jury ruled that the city did not maintain the sidewalk and fix needed repairs, which led to the fall.
The city will next consider whether to appeal the ruling.
“We fought hard to protect taxpayers, and make the plaintiff prove her case. We will now consider whether to appeal,” city attorney Chief of Staff Gerry Braun said.
On Tuesday, Hedgecock testified she got out of her car carrying folders in one hand and a phone in the other. She testified she was not looking down at her feet while she walked toward Grand Avenue.
When she tripped, she said, she was trying to keep her papers from flying and her cell phone from hitting.
News from across California
“I fell hard on my chest with some impact to my knees,” she testified.
The defense submitted an animation into evidence that they say suggests how the fall occurred.
“I was not running. I was wearing flats and I can’t run in flats,” Hedgecock said.
Cynthia Hedgecock said she scraped her knees but dusted herself off and told passersby she was fine. She continued on to the meeting.
Hedgecock went to a Scripps Clinic facility a few weeks later on Aug. 17, 2015, with complaints of chest pain and breast deformities.
The implants, according to the suit, were "irreparably damaged."
Hedgecock testified she received $19,924.04 in medical bills. The jury ruled Wednesday the city must reimburse Hedgecock for medical expenses, plus pay $65,000 for physical pain and mental suffering the incident caused.
An attorney representing the city of San Diego said there is no disputing a dangerous condition existed on the sidewalk on Morrell Street but they dispute that the fall occurred where the damage existed.
The defense also rejected the suggestion that the fall on that sidewalk caused the rupture in Hedgecock’s breast implant.
According to the city attorney, the fall was not witnessed by anyone. No images were submitted to document the damage to the plaintiff’s phone or clothing.
She contacted the city six months after the fall and indicated a different location on the claim filed with the city of San Diego than what was presented in the lawsuit.
You can read the full lawsuit here.