Losing a loved one is never easy, but it can be even more difficult when they die because of a senseless act. It can be nearly impossible to come to grips with it emotionally, and the victims are left to handle the burden of medical expenses, funeral costs and lost wages by themselves.
The family of one young woman is feeling that devastation today after an accident in late December left her dead. A police sergeant from Illinois was heading southbound when he struck the 29-year-old as she was crossing the street. She was rushed to a nearby hospital but died shortly thereafter from her injuries.
When police arrived at the scene of the accident, they noticed that the officer who was driving the car appeared intoxicated. He was booked and charged with injury by intoxicated use of a vehicle, but officials indicated that the charge could change. Authorities are investigating the accident and conducting a reconstruction to determine what happened.
It's a tragic case, but it does serve to illustrate a few points. First, that drunk driving is an ever-present scourge in our society and second, that the families of victims of auto-pedestrian accidents do have recourse. They can speak with an attorney, who may be able to conduct his or her own investigation into the crash to determine negligence and get help for the family.
Remember, civil actions are entirely separate from criminal cases. Whether the suspected negligent party is found guilty or not, victims can file a lawsuit to recover damages.
Source: gazettextra.com, "Police: Illinois officer was intoxicated when his vehicle struck, killed Lake Geneva woman," Jonah Beleckis, January 5, 2017