Clemson Employee Faces Civil Lawsuit From Widower Of Woman He Struck With His Car As She Crossed The Street On Foot
The stories of couples married for 50 years or more are heartwarming, but they always have a sad ending. The audiences of The Notebook, Up, or any other movie in which a couple stay together for the rest of their lives are always sad to see them leave this world, together or separately. There is no best way to lose your spouse after half a century together, but it would be hard to disagree that seeing your wife of 53 years get fatally injured by a drunk driver is one of the worst things that can happen to an elderly person. The loss of a lifelong companion under such preventable circumstances is devastating. While it is impossible to put a price tag on a lifetime of companionship, a South Carolina car accident lawyer can help you if you lost a close family member in a drunk driving accident.
Defendant Faces Criminal Charges and Wrongful Death Lawsuit After DUI Crash
In March 2019, Leonard and Virginia Byrne, who had been married to each other for 53 years, were walking home from church at around 8:00 in the evening. They were crossing Main Street in Greenville, when a Ford pickup truck approached faster than it should have been going in an area where there were so many pedestrians. Leonard waved to the driver to get him to slow down, but the driver seemed to accelerate. Leonard then tapped on the window of the truck as it approached, but the truck kept going, striking Virginia, who died shortly afterward from her injuries; she was 79 years old.
Police officers who arrived at the scene noticed that the driver of the pickup truck, 37-year-old Daniel Lee, seemed to be under the influence of alcohol, and Lee admitted that he had been drinking. Lee refused a breathalyzer test, but video-only footage from a police body cam showed him taking a field sobriety test where he had to walk on a very narrow line, as if he were walking on a tightrope.
As a result of the accident, Lee faced criminal charges for DUI. The charges were originally for misdemeanor DUI, but they could have been upgraded to felony DUI after Virginia Byrne died from her injuries. Leonard Byrne also filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Lee, seeking damages for medical expenses, funeral expenses, emotional distress, and loss of companionship; the Greenville News website did not specify the amount he was seeking. At the time of the accident, Lee was employed as an associate director of public relations, outreach, and media opportunities in the College of Engineering, Computing, and Applied Sciences at Clemson University; in April 2019, he was still employed at the university.
Contact Us Today for Help
A car accident lawyer can help you recover damages after a family member of yours is injured or killed in a drunk driving accident whether or not the driver later faces criminal charges for DUI. Contact a Columbia car accident lawyer at The Stanley Law Group for help.