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Family of killed novelist gets $1.5 million settlement

April 4, 2018 GMT

MILFORD - The wife of a Shelton novelist, who was killed in a head-on car crash in July, has been awarded a $1.5 million settlement against the driver accused of causing the crash.

The settlement was reached in Superior Court here on behalf of Jill Kwochka, of Hill Street, Shelton, for the death of her husband, John Kwochka.

“This loss was a true tragedy to all who knew and loved John Kwochka,” said Tom Ganim, who represented Jill Kwochka. “He was, by all accounts, an exceptional man. His family is devastated. Nothing will bring John back but we hope this brings some justice for the pain the family is enduring.

Amanda Cashmore, 22, of Cheshire, was charged last month by state police with negligent homicide with a motor vehicle for the crash that killed Kwochka. She could not be reached for comment.

Born in Bridgeport, Kwochka, 43, had been a Shelton resident for 30 years.

He graduated from Emmett O’Brien Technical School and attended The Baran Institute of Technology. Kwochka, an avid Red Sox and Pittsburg Steelers fan, was employed by Business Electronics of Wallingford. In addition to his wife, he is survived by a daughter and his parents.

Kwochka is the author of Sacrifice Your Love, a romance novel published by American Star Books in 2010. His family said he was working on a second book at the time of his death.

Police said Kwochka was driving westbound on Cheshire Road in Bethany at about 5 p.m. on July 14 when a pickup truck driven eastbound by Cashmore crossed into the opposite lane and hit Kwochka’s car head on.

Kwochka was pronounced dead at the scene from multiple injuries, police said. Cashmore suffered only minor injuries.

Ganim subsequently filed a lawsuit against Cashmore on behalf of the Kwochka family claiming Cashmore was negligent and careless in causing the accident.

“The motor vehicle accident and collision was caused as a result of the recklessness of the Defendant, Amanda Cashmore, and that recklessness was a substantial factor in causing the accident, injuries and damages. The Defendant, Amanda Cashmore, operated her motor vehicle with reckless disregard for the health, safety and well being of the Plaintiff and others on the road,” the lawsuit stated.