Every weekday morning during the school year, parents across Missouri send their children off to school with the expectation that they will come home at the end of the day. Sadly, not all children make it home. Some of them are killed in drunk driving accidents while they are waiting for their school buses.
In 2014, a 15-year-old boy who was a sophomore at a Missouri high school was waiting for his school bus, which stopped at the bottom of his home's driveway. The boy had no way of knowing that a car headed his way was about to leave the roadway and hit him. After the boy was struck, the car flipped over and came to rest.
The impact caused the boy severe injuries to which he succumbed. The driver, a 24-year-old man, was arrested on suspicion of being intoxicated. He originally faced charges that included armed criminal action and second-degree assault. However, he recently entered into a plea agreement with prosecutors in which he pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter and admitted to recklessly killing the teenager with his vehicle. As part of his plea deal, those charges were dropped and it will be up to the judge to determine the man's sentence.
His admissions in the criminal case, along with the charges to which he pleaded guilty, could be used as evidence to prove that his actions led to the death of the teenager in a wrongful death claim. If a Missouri court rules that the driver's negligence led to the boy's death, it might consider an award of damages. Any restitution received could help the family with the financial burdens that arose in the aftermath of this accident as other parents have done in the aftermaths of other drunk driving accidents.
Source: ktrs.com, "Eastern Missouri man admits drunkenly causing deadly wreck", May 19, 2016