The widow of a state trooper killed in a 2013 highway crash has agreed to a settlement in U.S. District Court to resolve her wrongful death lawsuit. Amy Cunniff, the widow of Trooper David Cunniff, had filed suit against the Canadian truck driver who crashed into her husband’s police cruiser. The truck driver, Gary Blakley, and his employer, GW McPherson Trucking, were sued in September 2014. It was alleged Blakley “negligently, carelessly and recklessly” failed to stay in his lane on Dec. 16, 2013, when he unintentionally crashed his tractor-trailer into Trooper Cunniff’s marked car as the officer stopped a driver speeding on the shoulder of the highway.
The truck driver, 67, had been working 16 minutes beyond the 14-hour limit for truck drivers when he hit the cruiser. Cunniff, 35, had been a trooper for nine years. He died from his injuries in the crash, leaving behind his wife and their two young sons.
Blakley pleaded guilty last year to criminally negligent homicide and is serving a 3 1/2-year prison sentence. The trial judge ordered the record sealed. There is a second lawsuit against Blakley and GW McPherson Trucking brought by Eric Heller, the driver who had been pulled over, for his injuries in the crash. Heller is represented by Joseph Brennan, a Queensbury lawyer. Thomas DiNovo and Scott Iseman, who are from Albany, represented the Plaintiff in this lawsuit.