Wal-Mart Settles With Tracy Morgan Over Turnpike Crash Suit

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Photographer: Luke Sharrett/Bloomberg

Tracy Morgan and Wal-Mart Stores Inc. settled the actor-comedian’s lawsuit over a New Jersey Turnpike crash that had left him in a coma for days and killed another comedian.

Morgan was riding in a van that was struck from behind by a Wal-Mart truck in June. The terms of the settlement weren’t disclosed in a statement Wednesday from Wal-Mart and Morgan’s lawyer, Benedict Morelli. Lawyers also asked a judge to seal documents related to the accord.

“Wal-Mart did right by me and my family, and for my associates and their families,” Morgan said in the statement. “I am grateful that the case was resolved amicably.”

The settlement comes days before the anniversary of the June 7 crash that killed James McNair, a comedian also known as Jimmy Mack who had been traveling with Morgan. McNair, 62, died when a tractor-trailer driven by Kevin Roper struck the rear of the limousine van carrying Morgan and others after a comedy show in Delaware.

Roper, who had gone at least 24 hours without sleep before the accident, was charged with vehicular homicide and assault by auto. He has pleaded not guilty.

In January, Wal-Mart reached a confidential settlement with McNair’s two children, who hadn’t sued.

Morgan, who starred in “30 Rock” and “Saturday Night Live,” sustained a traumatic brain injury in the accident. He suffered a subdural hematoma, a life-threatening collection of blood outside the brain, Morelli said in November. The accident also left Morgan with multiple facial fractures, a leg shattered in several places and blood in one eye. The crash placed the comedian’s career in limbo.

Wal-Mart U.S. President Greg Foran apologized Wednesday in the statement, saying the company is “committed to doing what’s right to help ensure the well-being of all of those who were impacted by the accident.”

“We are deeply sorry that one of our trucks was involved,” Foran said.

The case is Morgan v. Wal-Mart Stores Inc., 14-cv-04388, U.S. District Court, District of New Jersey (Trenton).

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