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Louisiana girl may have been killed by drunk driver

An 18-year-old Louisiana girl is dead. Her death is alleged to be the result of what causes many tragic car accidents -- drunk driving.

The 18-year-old girl was the passenger of a vehicle driven by a 19-year-old boy. The driver apparently lost control of the automobile, hit an embankment and flipped the car twice. As the accident unfolded, the girl was thrown from the vehicle. Although she initially survived the accident and was taken to a local hospital, she eventually died several days later.

After an accident investigation, police are now looking into whether the driver was drunk driving. Authorities have already charged him with an OWI and vehicular negligent injury. The district attorney's office plans to investigate the matter further. Ultimately, if it is confirmed that the driver was drinking, he will be charged with vehicular homicide.

While the criminal matter proceeds, the family members of the 18-year-old girl can seek some recovery from the civil law system. In particular, they can file a wrongful death lawsuit to recover for such costs like medial expenses and funeral costs. To succeed with such a lawsuit, the law requires them to prove that the driver's level of intoxication was too high to operate a vehicle safely. They can rely on evidence like police reports, blood alcohol tests and expert witnesses to prove their case.

Putting an 18-year-old girl to rest can be quite difficult for a family following a drunk driving accident. The law can offer some closure in the form of a wrongful death suit.

Source: KATC, "Funeral services for 18-year-old killed in drunk driving accident," Tonya LaCoste, Dec. 14, 2012

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