It’s been a little over a year since a 53-year-old man was struck and killed in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. The family said the man used a cane to get around and was likely headed to a nearby restaurant or convenience store the night he was killed.
The man was hit as he crossed West Union Boulevard where it intersects with Main Street. According to authorities, witnesses said the man slammed against a black BMW’s hood, fell to the ground and was run over before the car stopped. The victim was died at the accident scene.
The driver of the BMW is a well-known business owner in the area, also serving on several board of directors for several Lehigh Valley institutions. The Northhampton County District Attorney’s Office declined to prosecute the driver even though there was evidence that he had been drinking.
According to police reports, the driver wasn’t speeding and the victim attempted to cross the road against a green light. The driver’s blood alcohol content registered at .072, which is just below the .08 limit for a charge for DUI in Pennsylvania. He also submitted to a blood test, which put his BAC at .06. The man had admitted to having a beer while he waiting to pick up a pizza.
The victim’s family has retained an attorney who said that a civil lawsuit will be filed this month against the driver. He believes that the case will be strong in civil court because there is a lower burden of proof required than for criminal charges. The victim’s family is upset that the driver of the BMW was not charged. The driver’s attorney said that the accident was just that — and accident.
The district attorney denied allegations by the attorney for the victim’s family that the driver was treated any differently than anyone else would have been.
When someone is killed by another person’s negligence, the family has a right to seek compensation. An attorney with experience in wrongful death cases can provide more information about how to proceed with such a case.
Source: Lehigh Valley Live, “No charges for business leader drinking before fatal crash, cops say,” Nick Falsone, Nov. 24, 2015