A man from Union Springs is facing serious charges following a fatal accident in Scipio earlier in December, according to local sources. The man has been charged with vehicular manslaughter as well as DWI charges by the New York State Police following the car accident that killed the man’s brother. No further court date was reported.
According to police, the 33-year-old man lost control of his vehicle while driving on State Route 34B back on Dec. 13. He was apparently speeding in a 55 mph zone at the time of the crash, which saw his vehicle leave the shoulder of the road. The man’s brother, who was a passenger in the car at the time of the crash, was killed at the scene.
The driver now faces charges of first-degree vehicular manslaughter and traffic violations for speeding. He was also accused of both DWI and aggravated DWI. If he is convicted, he could face considerable jail time and other penalties. Some time after his arrest, the man was released from jail after meet the terms of bail set at $5,000.
The mere fact that the victim of this fatal car accident happened to be related to the driver responsible for the crash has no direct bearing on the criminal charges. Further, New York law does not bar an accident victim from pursuing a personal injury claim against a relative; by extension, the estate of a deceased victim is entitled to make a wrongful death claim against a dead victim’s relative. Clearly, a family in similar circumstances has a number of important issues to consider, potentially including whether to seek an insurance settlement on behalf of a deceased victim and/or to initiate a wrongful death claim against the relative believed responsible.
Source: cnycentral.com, “Man arrested, charged with vehicular manslaughter in fatal car accident“, Dec. 30, 2015