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'Top Model' Star

Sues Over 'Catastrophic' Car Crash --

Accident Torpedoed My Career!

1/18/2012 12:40 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF

Lexie Tomchek
Former "America's Next Top Model" contestant Lexie Tomchek claims she was permanently injured after a bus collided with her car last year -- and now, she's suing the driver for derailing her modeling career.

Lexie filed the legal docs in L.A. County Superior Court -- claiming a guy named Narciso Ayala took an illegal right turn on March 28, 2011 ... and smashed into her car ... resulting in a "catastrophic accident which caused serious and permanent injuries."

Lexie's lawyer tells TMZ, the model's career has taken a crippling blow as a result -- and now, she's suing for lost wages ... plus hospital and medical expenses.

Lexie wants unspecified damages, exceeding $25,000. Calls to the driver and his employer were not returned.

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