A police officer suffered injuries after officials say a suspected drunk driver ran a red light in Costa Mesa and struck the officer’s patrol vehicle. According to a news report in The Orange County Register, two officers were traveling westbound on Del Mar Avenue at Newport Boulevard in a marked police car the night of July 3, 2017. That’s when a man driving a Chevy Suburban northbound on Newport Boulevard drove through a red light and broadsided the police car.
One of the officers suffered a non-life-threatening shoulder injury. The driver, 66-year-old Leslie Lorrimer of Mission Viejo, was arrested at the scene on suspicion of felony DUI. The investigation into this case is still ongoing. Our thoughts and prayers are with the police officer who was injured in this suspected DUI collision. We wish him the very best for a quick and full recovery.
Violation of Laws
Often, when there is a DUI crash, we see that other laws are also violated. This case was no exception. In this particular incident, the driver of the Chevy Suburban not only blew through a red light at an intersection, but was also reportedly driving under the influence. It is illegal under California Vehicle Code Section 23152 (a) to operate a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs. The same section also prohibits drivers from operating vehicles with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 percent or higher.
Running a red light is also a violation of the law. California Vehicle Code section 21453 (a) states: “A driver facing a circular red signal shall stop at the limit line before entering the crosswalk on the near side of the intersection or, if none, then before entering the intersection, and shall remain stopped until an indication to proceed is shown.”
Compensation for Damages
In this particular case, the police officer can seek workers’ compensation benefits from his employer, which usually covers medical expenses and a portion of lost wages. In addition, he could also seek compensation from the at-fault driver for the injuries, damages and losses sustained as a result of his negligence or wrongdoing. DUI drivers can be held financially responsible for the damages they cause in addition to facing criminal charges and penalties. An experienced Costa Mesa personal injury lawyer will be able to help injured victims in such cases better understand their legal rights and options.