Desiree Robles, 31, was killed in a Stanton pedestrian accident after she was struck by a vehicle whose driver, officials say, was under the influence. According to a report in The Orange County Register, the crash occurred the morning of March 21 in the 8900 block of Katella Avenue. Officials say Robles was crossing Katella Avenue when the SUV headed eastbound struck her.
Robles suffered major injuries from the impact and was pronounced dead at the scene. The driver remained at the scene and an initial investigation by Orange County Sheriff’s deputies led them to believe that she was impaired. The driver, who hasn’t been identified, was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence. The investigation is ongoing.
We offer our deepest condolences to the family members of Desiree Robles for their tragic and heartbreaking loss. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers.
Laws and Liability Issues
Based on this news report, it appears that the driver of the SUV may have been under the influence when she struck and fatally injured the victim. Under California law, it is illegal for motorists to operate a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs. According to California Vehicle Code Section 23152 (a): “It is unlawful for any person who is under the influence of any alcoholic beverage or drug, or under the combined influence of any alcoholic beverage and drug, to drive a vehicle.”
In the report, officials also mention that the pedestrian was not in a marked crosswalk at the time. However, the law states that drivers have a duty of care to pedestrians at all times. California Vehicle Code Section 21954 states: “Every pedestrian upon a roadway at any point other than within a marked crosswalk or within an unmarked crosswalk at an intersection shall yield the right-of-way to all vehicles upon the roadway so near as to constitute an immediate hazard.” The same section also states: “The provisions of this section shall not relieve the driver of a vehicle from the duty to exercise due care for the safety of any pedestrian upon a roadway.”
Protecting Families’ Rights
In such cases, in addition to facing criminal charges and penalties, at-fault drivers can be held liable for the injuries, damages and losses they cause. Families of deceased pedestrian accident victims may be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit seeking compensation for damages such as medical expenses, funeral and burial costs, lost future income, pain and suffering and loss of love, care and companionship. An experienced Orange County DUI victims’ lawyer will be able to help families better understand their legal rights and options.