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High school freshman killed in head-on collision

A Louisiana high school student is dead following a head-on crash in Gonzales on Dec. 9. The driver who caused the accident, according to a state police representative, is believed to have been impaired by drugs when the accident happened.

The wrong-way driver, 19, a resident of Reserve, was taken into custody after his release from St. Elizabeth Hospital for minor injuries. He is charged with vehicular homicide and negligent injuring, reckless operation of a motor vehicle and DUI.

The accident happened around 7 a.m. when three sisters were heading west on Highway 74 on their way to school in a Chevrolet Sonic. The vehicle driven by the suspected impaired driver was heading east on 74 when he encountered traffic in his path and veered into the oncoming westbound lane.

The head-on crash killed the high school freshman who was sitting in the back seat. The driver and another front seat passenger wore seat belts and suffered injuries in the accident. They were transported to a local hospital. The teenager who was killed, police said, also wore a seat belt, but it was improperly fastened.

The negligent and reckless behavior of an impaired driver involved in a DUI accident may result in the death of a motorist, as in this case. However, whether the charges are upheld, the decedent's family may still bring a wrongful death suit against the driver. An attorney may assist in determining the basis for a suit by reviewing all accident reports and witness accounts. The suit may be able to compensate the family for the expenses related to funeral and burial costs. If the individual who was killed in the accident failed to take proper precautions, this may be factored into the judgment.

Source: NOLA, "Driver in LA Highway 74 crash that killed Dutchtown High student booked on DWI", Diana Samuels, December 09, 2014

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