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Former surgeon will pay $3.7 million to settle civil lawsuit for traffic crash

Former surgeon Mark Benson will pay almost $3.7 million to settle a civil lawsuit in a traffic crash that killed a popular educator and two others.

WTMJ Radio in Milwaukee said Benson decided to pay, instead of facing a trial scheduled for next week in Waukesha County.

Earlier this year, he averted a criminal trial and was sentenced to 30 years in prison following a plea deal.

Benson, 56, was high on prescription medicines when his car rear-ended a vehicle in Oconomowoc a year and a half ago.

High school associate principal Jennifer Bukosky was killed, along with her daughter Courtney Bella, 10, and an unborn child.

Benson was not drunk at the time but the crash happened just days before he was supposed to report to jail for his third drunken driving conviction.

It partially resulted in OWI legislation that was passed recently by the state Assembly.

Among other things, it would first first-time drunken driving a crime if a child's in the vehicle.

But Benson's family says the measures do not go far enough.