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Driver in deadly car accident now facing vehicular homicide

It is always tragic when a person loses his or her life as the result of an accident, but when the person is young, and the accident is said to have been caused by another person's drunk driving, the tragedy becomes even more poignant. No New Jersey resident should have to lose a loved one in such a way, and no one should have to suffer serious personal injury because of a senseless car accident. With these problems in mind, Mount Laurel residents may recall one horrible automobile accident that occurred last year and resulted in one death and two injuries.

The offending driver of the vehicle recently had his charges upgraded to vehicular homicide and assault by auto, according to a Burlington County prosecutor. The upgrade came after lab reports were submitted that showed that the man was under the influence of alcohol. Originally, the 19-year-old had been charged with DWI and reckless driving.

The car accident, which happened back in September, resulted in the death of his 19-year-old female passenger. A second female passenger was injured severely and had to be transported to the Capital Health Regional Medical Center in Trenton. The driver also sustained injuries, suffering a fractured clavicle. He was 18 when the car accident occurred, meaning the driver was below the legal age for drinking in New Jersey.

On Nov. 1, in his first appearance in Superior Court, the man was ordered to be held on $150,000 bail. In New Jersey, vehicular homicide is a second-degree offense. If he is convicted, the man could serve up to 10 years in prison.

It is not known how the families of the deceased woman or the injured woman feel about these upgraded charges. One can only guess that they wish this horrible car accident never happened in the first place. In painful situations such as this one, individuals who have suffered personal injuries, along with families of the deceased, have a right to seek compensation for their pain and suffering. High medical bills and lost wages can figure into a personal injury or wrongful death case, and one consolation is that people can seek alleviation in court. It is possible for individuals and families to collect considerable damages for the reckless and deadly actions of another, as well as gain some measure of solace from seeing responsible parties held accountable.

Source: phillyburbs.com, "Moorestown man charged with vehicular homicide in 2010 crash," Danielle Camilli, Nov. 2, 2011

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Gary D. Ginsberg is a Certified Civil Trial Lawyer who has been recognized as an expert in litigating cases in the courts of New Jersey.

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