Fatal Hit-and-Run: Wrongful Death

Oct. 16th, 2013   /   ,

Fatal Hit-and-Run: Wrongful Death

 

Recently, a man was arrested in Palm Beach County for his involvement in a hit-and-run incident that resulted in the death of an innocent bicyclist. Not only is the suspect reported to have driven negligently in such a manner that he crashed into a bicyclist, killing him, but he is also accused of trying to cover up the death by hiding the corpse of the bicyclist in a patch of bushes outside of a nearby McDonald’s.

Our dedicated attorneys at the Law Offices of Aronberg and Aronberg know the toll that a wrongful death can take on the family of a victim. This fatal hit-and-run incident is clearly a demonstration of a wrongful death in the worst possible scenario. Regardless of whether or not the suspect intended to injure – or kill – the victim, he is still liable for the death. We can assume that this was a case of negligence rather than malice, but either way, the death would not have occurred were it not for the inappropriate actions of the suspect, and that fact pins the responsibility on the suspect. The fact of the matter is that the suspect left the incident alive, but the victim unknowingly entered the incident never to return home again – his family and friends will struggle without him.

According to the suspect who was recently arrested in Royal Palm Beach, he felt his car strike something when he looked down for a moment. After pulling his car to the side of the road and looking around, he saw nothing and returned to his car, continuing on down the road. The, when he heard a clanking sound, he pulled into the parking lot of a McDonald’s, which is where he noticed that the bike of the man become attached to his car.

Police who investigated the scene claimed that they found the corpse of the victim tossed into a patch of bushes outside the McDonald’s. In addition, they found the victim’s DNA on the suspect’s pants as well as the inside of the passenger’s side window of the suspect’s car. This, coupled with the fact that they found drag marks from the point of impact to the bushes, led police to the conclusion that the suspect found the body of the victim and moved him into the bushes, attempting to cover-up the incident.

The suspect is expected to face charges based on his violations of Florida law. Section 316.027 of the Florida State Statutes describes the requirements of an individual involved in a hit-and-run resulting death and/or personal injuries. According to the stipulations, and the facts of the case, the suspect faces, at least, a third degree felony charge, which carries the possibility of years behind bars and thousands of dollars in fines.

While state prosecutors will charge and try the suspect for his wrongdoing, that won’t bring back the victim – his family will solemnly continue on without him. In addition to the criminal charges to be brought against the suspect, his family is entitled to bring wrongful death charges against the suspect in civil court, for the tremendous losses they have experienced due to his negligence.

The law is there to protect us from injury, losses, etc. Criminal law makes sure that criminals are held responsible for their actions, and the civil courts are there to give victims and their families the opportunity to seek compensation for what they have lost.

If you’ve been injured by the actions of a criminal, in any fashion, seeing the wrongdoer prosecuted may give a sense of closure but it will not amount to all of your entitlements. Contact the Law Offices of Aronberg and Aronberg for a free consultation and let us tell you about how we can help you. Call us at 561-266-9191 or email us at daronberg@aronberglaw.com.

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