A criminal case is building against a Pennsylvania man who law enforcement officials said was drunk when he drove a pickup into the path of a motorcycle. An investigation into the suspects court records showed the West Chester man had been a negligent driver in the past with five convictions for DUI.
Police reported the 49-year-old man appeared intoxicated following the fatal
on the Wilmington Pike in Westtown Township. The Friday night collision occurred when the truck driver made a turn in the path of oncoming motorcyclist.
The bike hit the side of the pickup. A 24-year-old Chesterbrook man was severely injured and died after a brief hospitalization.
Officers who responded to the fatal crash reported the driver failed field sobriety tests. The truck driver was arrested on suspicion of drunk driving. The suspect was also apparently operating a vehicle illegally. His drivers license had been suspended or revoked over the earlier DUI convictions.
The driver was jailed for violating parole. Formal criminal charges are expected once police receive the results of toxicology tests. The accident investigation remains open.
Pennsylvania laws require individuals with repeat DUI offenses to have ignition interlock systems installed on their vehicles. The devices prevent a cars ignition from firing when the driver fails an alcohol breath test in the vehicle. The pickup driver had no ignition device in the truck, possibly because he was not supposed to be driving at all.
The young victim might have been a recent college graduate, a husband or father. He may have provided his familys sole financial support.
In addition to enormous grief, the victims family may be facing accident-related medical bills and the unexpected costs of a funeral. Economic hardship would also arise from permanently lost family income.
A wrongful death claim would give a spouse, a child or a parent the chance to recover pecuniary losses, as well as damages for emotional suffering.
Source: abclocal.go.com, "
Driver had 5 DUIs before fatal crash with motorcycle
" No author given, Apr. 29, 2013