Every day, in Illinois and across the country, the lives of motorists and pedestrians are at risk, especially when negligent or reckless drivers are nearby. Thousands of motor vehicle accidents cause devastation to families and communities, particularly those that result in fatalities. When immediate family members of deceased accident victims believe another party is responsible for their loved ones' deaths, they are able to file civil legal claims to seek restitution.
That is what the family of a man who recently died has done. The decedent was a 30-year-old passenger traveling in a vehicle that was hit by another car. He initially survived the crash but died of his injuries in the hospital, a week later.
The person driving the other car is now facing criminal charges and is in jail with a set bond of $800,000. Police say they had pulled him over in a traffic stop. He fled the scene, then ran a red light, just before crashing into the vehicle that was carrying the now-deceased passenger. The decedent's family has named the police department as a defendant in a wrongful death claim, alleging that the department engaged in a reckless, needless vehicle chase that ultimately caused the accident to occur.
Police say it is true that the driver of the other car ran a red light, but deny that police officers activated a vehicle chase. Motor vehicle accidents resulting in death often leave a lot of questions unanswered. It will now be up to the judge overseeing this case to review the facts and decide whether the plaintiff's case has merit. In an Illinois wrongful death case, a plaintiff is tasked with providing evidence to substantiate his or her claim; most plaintiffs rely on experienced personal injury attorneys to advocate for them in court.