The consequences for driving drunk are varied but can begin with fines of $2,000 or more. The consequences from being convicted of driving drunk and causing a fatal accident are higher fines, possible community service and/or anywhere from two to 20 years in prison. A Texas woman was recently arrested after police say she caused a fatal accident.
A few weeks before her arrest, the woman and a passenger were allegedly arguing when she crossed from her lane into oncoming traffic after losing control of her vehicle. Her car hit a tractor-trailer, and the impact killed her passenger. According to the arrest warrant, the passenger had tried to get out of the vehicle while it was still in motion, causing the driver to slam on brakes, leading to loss of control of the car.
An hour after the collision, the driver's blood alcohol level was recorded at .10, and she admitted to police she had consumed two alcoholic beverages before getting in the car. She was arrested and charged with intoxication manslaughter. The judge set her bond at $10,000, which she was able to post and was released from county lockup. If she is found guilty of the charge against her, she could be sentenced to prison in addition to paying a fine up to $10,000.
This criminal charge may not be the only legal predicament this woman faces as a result of this fatal accident. The family of the passenger may choose to take her to civil court by filing a wrongful death lawsuit. If she is found liable in that case, a monetary judgment could be entered against her. Families in Texas who have lost a loved one due to the negligence of another can seek financial relief that could cover a host of damages. An attorney who has experience with this type of lawsuit can assess the circumstances and determine the best way forward.
Source: themonitor.com, "Woman faces 20 years in prison for intoxication manslaughter", Feb. 23, 2018