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Man charged in fatal accident in Pennsylvania

These blogs are posted on behalf of Seidel, Cohen, Hof & Reid, LLC, and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the firm or its attorneys. The information presented in this blog is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be legal advice.

A 26-year-old man faces a dozen charges in connection with a serious accident on Dec. 27 that killed another man. Pennsylvania police said the charges were issued on Jan. 14, and the man was expected to turn himself in the following week for arraignment. Authorities have confirmed the fatal accident likely involved intoxication on the part of the driver. 

According to the accident report, the crash happened just before 2:15 a.m. on the morning in question. The man killed, a passenger in the car, was from out of state and was apparently visiting family. The driver is said to have been driving with his headlights off when he drove directly into the path of a tractor trailer. The trailer struck the vehicle's passenger side, killing the 25-year-old passenger. 

Authorities arriving on the scene suspected the man was drunk at the time of the crash. Subsequent blood testing revealed the man to have marijuana in his system as well as a blood alcohol level of 0.154, nearly twice the legal limit in Pennsylvania. The man now faces charges of felony vehicular homicide while under the influence, as well as four misdemeanor DUI charges, reckless endangerment and other traffic charges. If convicted he could face serious prison time. 

Even if a conviction is not achieved in this case, Pennsylvania state law still allows the family of the deceased passenger to file a wrongful death lawsuit against the man. Using evidence from the police investigation, the family could pursue such a suit in civil court. While it will not reverse the tragedy of the fatal accident, a successful suit may help to cover the family's final arrangements. 

This blog entry was posted on behalf of Seidel, Cohen, Hof & Reid, LLC, and does not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the firm or its attorneys. The information presented in this blog is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be legal advice.

Source: wfmz.com, "Souderton man charged in DUI death of friend", Jan. 14, 2016

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