Leflore County businesswoman K.K. Henderson Kent has been ordered to pay more than $2 million to the mother of a man who died last year after a vehicle he was driving hit a donkey owned by Kent on a road near her house.

Leflore County Circuit Court Judge Ashley Hines handed down the default judgment in the wrongful death lawsuit July 29 after Kent failed to put up a defense.

Kent, who operates K.K.’s Deli in Greenwood and owns several rental properties, was sued by Sandra Santos, whose 19-year-old son, Jose Escudero, died as a result of the accident last September.

Escudero, a 2018 honor graduate of Amanda Elzy High School, had lived with his mother in Sidon. He was employed by Arnold Transportation.

The sum includes economic and non-economic damages and in part reflects the amount of money Escudero might have earned in a lifetime, according to court documents.

On Sept. 20, 2018, Escudero was traveling at dawn along County Road 512, which is unlit,  when his vehicle collided with the donkey. Kent lives on County Road 512.  

His vehicle veered off the right side of the road and into a tree. Escudero was found dead in the vehicle.

According to the lawsuit, Kent’s donkey “escaped her fence where one or more of the rails were down, missing or broken, and thereafter roamed onto County Road 512 and into the path of Escudero.”

The complaint  also alleged that due to the close proximity of Kent’s fence to the road as well as Kent’s “actual or constructive knowledge of the defects in the fence and the significant increase in the risk of serious injury to motorists caused by livestock on the subject roadway, a fatal crash involving Defendant’s donkey or other livestock was not a matter of if, but when.”

Kent, according to the complaint, failed to prevent the donkey from roaming the road and failed to inspect the fence for rails that were down, missing or broken and did not inspect for dilapidation in general, as well as other matters to prevent “the escape of livestock.” Prior to Escudero’s death, several motorists “made numerous complaints to local law enforcement officials” about Kent’s livestock roaming on the road, the lawsuit claimed, but she “ignored motorists’ complaints and warnings from local law enforcement officials to keep her livestock, including the subject donkey, enclosed in her fence and out of the roadway.”   

Kent could not be reached for comment Friday to see whether she plans to appeal.

Contact Gerard Edic at 581-7239 or gedic@gwcommonwealth.com.

(6) comments

J Perry

WE are so sorry for the loss of Mr Escudero. BUt when did lawsuits become lotto amounts??? This is an outrageous amount of money.


TBG

Ridiculous amount of money. Did they take into consideration fixing the fence may have been a priority for her that day, before the accident happened. She is ONE person doing it by herself most of the time. They won’t get the amount requested. Again..it’s a ridiculous amount. Don’t pay it. You lost your poor donkey too 😔


citizen

i just feel like comparing a donkeys life to a human being is pretty ridiculous


dxtimmo

[thumbup][thumbup][thumbup][thumbup]


cbagwo

Donkey was never hit. Dog had to go to vet though. But you can't sue over a dog?


Gwen Perkins

I need a job where Mr. Escudaro worked. I'm 62 years old. Have worked all of my life as a nurse and have never come close to making 2 Million. I am sorry about this death and praying for his family. I also pray for Ms. Kent as she tries to relinquish this burden.


(Edited by staff.)

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.