A West Virginia man accused of driving drunk and fleeing the scene of a deadly January 2016 accident has pleaded guilty to two charges, reports indicate. Sentencing is set for February, and the man faces up to two decades in prison after admitting to leaving the scene of an accident and DUI causing death, both felonies.
According to news sources, the man was driving his truck in Morgantown on Jan. 17 when he lost control of the vehicle and veered onto the sidewalk. There, the Winfield resident struck a 20-year-old woman who was walking with a friend, and he subsequently fled the scene. The victim, a native of Charleston, died as a result of her injuries.
Two passengers were in the man's truck at the time of the fatal accident. The driver, now 20, was a student at WVU when it occurred. When questioned by police, he reportedly admitted to being drunk at the time.
The surviving family members of a victim of a fatal car accident often must deal with both immediate and long-term financial burdens in addition to their grieving over the sudden loss of a loved one. They must pay for the victim's funeral and burial, and then they need to somehow replace the contributions that the decedent had been making to the household budget. When the accident was caused by another driver who was speeding, distracted, impaired by alcohol or drugs, or otherwise negligent, one possible avenue of recourse could be a wrongful death lawsuit filed against that driver with the assistance of legal counsel.
Source: MetroNews, "Guilty plea in deadly Morgantown hit and run," Jeff Jenkins, Dec. 19, 2016