An elementary school teacher in Chandler, Ariz., is facing murder charges for a fatal crash. This is according to the Arizona Republic after killing a woman in a car accident.
Just earlier this year, 30-year-old Erika Flynn was driving her Toyota Camry on Arizona Avenue in Chandler. Erika did not stop at a red light, colliding into a 66-year-old woman’s vehicle. Flynn was reportedly going 75 miles per hour — which is 30 miles per hour over the limit on Arizona Avenue. The 66-year-old died at the scene.
Police found via blood tests that Flynn’s blood alcohol content was .283. According to the Republic’s report, it is more than three times over the legal limit in Arizona.
Police said that they charged Flynn with second-degree murder following the fatal crash.
Drunk Driving – The Cause of Fatal Crashes in Arizona
Unfortunately, drunk driving claims the lives of upwards of 300 Arizonans every year, with hundreds more surviving with injuries. This fact is highlighted by the Arizona Department of Transportation. In fact, alcohol plays a factor in about 5% of all vehicle crashes in the Grand Canyon State. The most common DUI-fueled car collision is a rear end crash, ADOT reports. Most of these incidents happen around the early morning hours of Saturday and Sunday.
In addition to the deep emotional toll losing a loved one to drunk driving crash, financial ramifications can be costly. ADOT estimates that the total economic loss due to drunk driving crashes — which includes factors like injuries and property damage — was more than $375 million in 2013.
Fatal Crash – by a drunk driver — what are my rights?
If you receive injuries in a collision with a drunk driver, you should contact the best lawyer to help you get the justice you deserve. The Thompson Law Firm in Chandler, Ariz., can provide the dogged advocate you need in your corner following such a disorienting incident.
If you’ve been injured in an auto accident by an impaired driver, you have the option of filing a personal injury lawsuit to recover some of the financial cost of your injuries, property damage and general pain and suffering in the wake of the crash.
Driving under the influence (DUI) is defined in the state of Arizona (§28-1381) as operating a vehicle while under the influence of liquor, drug, vapor-releasing substances or any combination. The blood alcohol content limit in Arizona is .08 for a motorist and is .04 for a licensed commercial motor vehicle driver.
If the individual in your case has been criminally charged with DUI, you’re likely facing a better chance of receiving financial compensation in a civil lawsuit. The burden of proof in civil court is less strict than in criminal court. In civil court, a judge or jury follows a “preponderance of the evidence” standard, which means a majority of jurors has to agree upon an outcome, rather than unanimity among jurors required in criminal court.
Fatal Crashes, Wrongful Death, and DUI
If you’ve lost a loved one to a drunk driving incident, you’re able to file a civil lawsuit for wrongful death. You can do it in addition to whatever criminal charges the defendant may be facing.
In Arizona, those allowed to file such claims on behalf of the deceased include a spouse, children, parents or legal guardian, depending on the circumstance. These suits are also governed by a statute of limitations and family members have a two-year window to file from the date of the death.
The types of damages family members can recover from a wrongful death suit include financial compensation for medical bills. These medical bills may include payment for property damage, pain and suffering incurred by the loss of your loved one.
And in the case of a drunk driving incident, you may be able to receive punitive damages, as well. This is a higher financial penalty for defendants who have committed what the judge deems is an egregious act.
If a drunk driver injures you, don’t hesitate to call Thompson Law Firm, based out of Chandler Ariz. Get your free consultation today.