People who drive drunk pose a dangerous risk to others who share the roadways, along with posing a risk to their passengers and themselves. This is especially true in the cases of fatal accidents, such as one in which a Texas man was charged after being suspected of drunk driving. However, the charges against him were dropped after it was determined that he is incompetent and is likely to remain so.
The man was involved in a crash that happened back in 2012. He allegedly drank over 20 beers and then traveled in the wrong direction on an interstate highway. This led to a head-on collision that resulted in the deaths of three individuals.
The man was also seriously injured in the accident. Following the crash, he was reportedly disoriented and unaware of his location. In addition, he has no recollection of the crash, and the documentation states that medical professionals do not expect him to become competent in the future. Reports indicate that the man spent over a week in a coma and remained in the hospital for at least one year. His wife is now his guardian.
Even though the Texas man is not being held responsible on a criminal level, the families of the deceased may still be able to collect wrongful death compensation if they filed claims before the statute of limitations expired. While evidence presented in a criminal case may be beneficial to a civil case, a criminal conviction is not required for a civil court to award damages in wrongful death cases. In successfully navigated wrongful death claims, families suffering after fatal accidents often find financial stability and can even possibly find a certain degree of emotional closure.
Source: Houston Chronicle, "Charges dropped against driver who suffered brain injury in crash that killed 3", Cindy Horswell, Dec. 18, 2014