Sunday, September 17, 2017

$1.5 million awarded in drunk driving accident lawsuit

Almost $2 million was awarded to a Monroe County woman after a drunk driving accident left her seriously injured.

On Friday, the victim's attorney says they wanted to send a message to bar owners and drivers that aren't responsible: There could be repercussions.

"Her spleen had to be removed, she had a lacerated liver, brain bleeds, broken bones, significant injuries both physical and non-physical,” attorney Teena Miller of Gold, Khourey, and Turak, L.C., said.

Miller was talking about a 21-year-old victim, who was Christmas shopping in December 2014 when she was traveling through Monroe County to drop off a friend and her car was hit head-on by a drunk driver.

The driver responsible for the crash was Carol Jones.

Miller said Jones was speeding and her blood alcohol content was more than two times the legal limit.

On Monday, a jury decided that Jones and the American Legion in Beallsville was responsible for the crash.

"We aren't saying don't drink alcohol -- everyone wants to have a good time and watch football, whatever,” Miller said. “We are saying if you drink, have a designated driver.”

Miller's firm sponsors the 'Booze & Cruise, You'll Lose’ campaign a few times a year near the holidays.

She says they also want to make sure business owners understand the law.

“The law mandates you need to train your bartenders so they recognize the signs of intoxication and your bartender stops serving when someone is visible intoxicated,” Miller said.

Jones was sentenced to prison time for the incident. She is now free, but is not able to have a driver license.