Yankton woman files wrongful death lawsuit for daughters 2017 ATV death

Local News

HARTINGTON, Neb. (KCAU) – A Yankton, South Dakota woman is suing a father and son for their role in the death of the woman’s daughter in June 2017.

Lisa Anderson filed the civil lawsuit in March in Cedar County, Nebraska against 27-year-old Derrik Nelson, his father Douglas Nelson, and the family farm, Nelson Farms.

Lisa Anderson’s 21-year-old daughter Jessi Anderson died on June 29, 2017, near South Yankton, Nebraska. Jessi Anderson was a passenger on an ATV with Derrik Nelson driving when the ATV crashed. Derrik Nelson was accused of operating the ATV while under the influence of alcohol. Derrik Nelson then left the scene of the crash. He was later charged with false reporting and vehicular homicide.

The suit claims that Nelson farms, owned by Douglas Nelson, owned the ATV, and was negligent in allowing Derrik Nelson to use the ATV. The suit says that if not for using the ATV from the farm, Jessi Anderson would have not been killed. It also says that Derrik Nelson was negligent in operating the ATV.

The suit asks for Derrik Nelson, Douglas Nelson, and Nelson Farms for survival personal injury damages and wrongful death damages under state law. Lisa Anderson is also asking for them to pay for Jessi Anderson’s funeral costs of $10,371.67 as well as fees and other relief deemed just and proper.

Derrik Nelson pleaded no contest to motor vehicle homicide and false reporting to an officer in a plea deal. He was sentenced in December 2018 to 90 and 90 days in the Cedar County Jail, five years of probation and fines of $2,500. Of the 180 days in jail, 25 were to be served in two two-day periods and one one-day period for five years each. The days were around the day of the crash, Jessi Anderson’s birthday, and Derrik Nelson’s birthday.

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