The average person makes hundreds of decisions each and every day. Most of these are seemingly inconsequential — what to wear or eat — while others may have unforeseen consequences on both the individual’s life as well as the life of others. Such decisions could have led to the recent conviction of one man in Massachusetts because of a fatal car accident last year that resulted in the death of an elderly woman.
The accident happened one afternoon in Nov. 2013. An investigation of the accident site reportedly showed that a 19-year-old driver crossed the center line, causing a head-on collision with a vehicle driven by an 83-year-old woman. The teenager was hospitalized, but the woman died at the scene of the accident.
The man has recently been found guilty of a vehicular homicide and a charge related to the underage possession of liquor. He has yet to be sentenced, but he could face up to 30 months in a correctional facility. If he had been found guilty of the more serious charge of involuntary manslaughter, he could have spent up to 15 years in prison.
While the conviction may give the family members of the deceased woman some sense of justice, it will do nothing to alleviate the financial burden that a fatal car accident such as this can create. While not necessary to do so, the recent conviction may support claims of negligence in a Massachusetts civil court. If negligence is properly documented in civil court (and proof of the criminal conviction in this case may suffice), the family members of the deceased woman could be awarded monetary damages to compensate them for the financial ramifications of the woman’s death.
Source: recorder.com, “Deerfield man guilty in fatal crash”, David Rainville, Feb. 10, 2015