For more than three years, the family of a 26-year-old woman has mourned over the loss of their loved one. With hopes of one day helping special needs children, the young woman was pursuing a master’s degree at an Alabama college. Tragically, her dreams will never be realized as she was killed in a fatal car accident when the driver of a pickup truck ran a red light.
The man who was driving the pickup truck that smashed into the woman’s car is currently serving a 15 year prison sentence. The fatal accident happened when the 26-year-old was traveling through an intersection. The driver of the pickup truck ran a red light and crashed into the woman’s car. She sustained multiple serious injuries from which she died.
The driver of the pickup truck who caused the fatal accident was tested for alcohol and drugs. Test results showed he had high levels of both Xanax and methadone in his system when the crash occurred. While both were drugs that had been prescribed to the man, the levels at which they circulated in his system indicated drug abuse.
In addition to the criminal charges, the family of the young woman who was killed also filed a civil lawsuit against the negligent driver. In a recent decision, an Alabama jury awarded the woman’s family a settlement in the amount of $13 million for punitive damages suffered as a result of the loss of their loved one.
The large settlement sends a clear message to Alabama residents that individuals who chose to drive while impaired will be punished.
Source: Alabama Live, “Madison County jury award $13 million in fatal car wreck case,” Brian Lawson, Dec. 4, 2012