A 21-year-old Florida woman who caused an accident last fall that took the lives of two people in a wrong-way accident made her first court appearance earlier this month. The woman, who had allegedly been drinking at a restaurant prior to the crash, reportedly tweeted that she was “2 drunk 2 care” before getting behind the wheel. She was a minor at the time of the crash and did not have a driver’s license.
According to police officers, the woman’s blood alcohol content was almost two times the legal limit of 0.08, and marijuana was detected in her blood. Her attorney commented at her first appearance that she may have become intoxicated involuntarily, though it isn’t clear how far that argument will go.
Hopefully the families of the accident victims are able to see some justice in the criminal case. In addition, both families have already filed lawsuits against the restaurant where the girl allegedly drank alcohol prior to the crash. The basis for the litigation is that the restaurant allegedly served her alcohol knowing she was a minor. To do so is grounds for holding a bar liable under state law. It will be interesting to see how the litigation proceeds. Here again, it is hoped that some measure of justice and accountability will be achieved.
Those who have been harmed by a drunk driver need to know their rights in terms of compensation. In some cases, it isn’t only the drunk driver who can be held liable, but also the establishment that negligently served the alcohol. Because such compensation isn’t always easy to win, it is important to work with an attorney who knows the law and how to zealously advocate for their client in such situations.
Source: CBS News, “‘2drunk2care’ Florida driver held on $600K bond,” April 9, 2014.