It is unfortunate that some drivers in Montana choose to get behind the wheel after drinking. Not only does this violate the law, but it places other drivers, bicyclists and pedestrians in jeopardy. Any car accident carries with it the danger of people being severely injured and dying, but when it involves a drunk driver, it is particularly egregious due to the irresponsibility and lack of concern for others. Making matters worse is when there is an auto accident because of a driver under the influence and the driver compounds the situation by fleeing the scene, turning it into a hit and run. Those who are injured or families who lose a loved one in this type of crash need to know their rights to seek compensation.
A 31-year-old pedestrian was hit and killed by a drunk driver. The woman allegedly hit the man at around 11 p.m. and initially stopped her SUV to check on him. A witness told the driver that she was going to call for help and the driver got into her vehicle and fled. Law enforcement conducted an accident investigation, followed a trail of leaky fluid and subsequently found the vehicle at a residence.
When the woman came outside, officers noted that there was a strong smell of alcohol and her speech was slurred. She was tested to determine how much alcohol was in her system and she had approximately twice the legal limit. The woman was placed under arrest for multiple charges including DUI, fleeing the scene of an accident, and operating her vehicle with a suspended license. In addition, she has a history of traffic offenses that she did not appear in court to address.
An auto accident with a drunk driver can cause an untold amount of financial and personal pain to the victim and his or her family. If the victim survives, there is the chance of massive medical costs and problems regaining normal function. With a fatality, the family left behind will need to find a way to get beyond what happened and survive without that person’s company and support in every possible way. In order to protect themselves and recover damages for what occurred, the family needs to make sure that they understand their rights by discussing a potential legal case with a qualified lawyer.
Source: missoulian.com, “Bail set at $50,000 for Missoula woman accused in fatal hit-and-run,” Dillon Kato, Feb. 27, 2017