For decades, Houston has seen countless illegal drag races played out on its highways. A major appeal of these contests is the adrenaline rush of flooring tricked-out, nitrous-burning vehicles that hit triple-digit speeds within seconds.
But with the thrill comes consequences, and innocent victims are often caught in the path of these reckless drivers. Such was the case when a retired caregiver of special needs children and her husband, a pastor and remodeling business owner, were killed in a hit-and-run accident. A drag racing truck ran a red light and tragically crashed into them in northwest Houston. The couple, who had been married for over thirty years, had been visiting a niece with a new baby and were headed home from the hospital.
The truck driver eventually turned himself in to the Harris County Sheriff’s Office and appealed to the family for forgiveness in court, saying that since the tragedy, God had transformed him. One of the victims’ sons said he wanted justice served but would forgive the driver and pray for him and his family because that was what his devout parents would want him to do.
One news account reported that the driver got a forty-eight-year sentence. Another said he will be in prison for twelve years in concurrently running sentences. The charges were two counts of failure to stop and render aid and two counts of felony racing “in exchange for the sentence.”
Law enforcement has a hard time keeping up, so to speak, as these contests are often set up last minute in changing locations at night. According to a news interview with Harris County Officer Joe O’Leary, the officers must catch the racers in the act in order to arrest them. He added that he has witnessed speeds of at least 225 mph.
For innocent victims of street-racing crashes, the damage and injuries done can be severe. Brain and spine injuries are common results, and wrongful death is tragically seen on a regular basis. Even when the street racer goes to prison, such as in the story above, the victims are still left with medical and funeral bills to contend with—not to mention their pain and suffering and other damages.
Because street racing is a glaring example of negligent driving, a personal injury lawsuit can be used as a means to recover the compensation victims and their families need to move on. It might even be possible to use a criminal conviction as evidence to prove the civil case.
At Denena Points, PC we see daily how lives can be shattered by other people’s recklessness and have dedicated our careers to fighting for victims’ rights. Street racing and other bad behavior on the road—such as drunk, drugged, or distracted driving—are examples of negligence, which leave the victims of these crashes with options for compensation.
All of these cases involve a selfish disregard for other people’s wellbeing. Call today for a free consultation to learn how we can help you or your family if someone’s bad decisions have caused you harm. To get started, simply call 713-766-1163 or reach us online through the contact form on this page.