Kelly Pham, 21, of La Mirada, was killed in a Fullerton car accident, which officials say, involved a suspected drunk driver. According to a news report in The Orange County Register, the fatal DUI collision occurred when the driver, 23-year-old Justin Drake, was speeding in a 2006 Mazda westbound on Malvern Avenue, near Woods Avenue, the morning of July 24, 2011.
Police say he lost control of the car at a curve and struck a tree and retaining wall. Pham, who sustained critical injuries, was transported to a local hospital where she died. Drake was also injured, but was arrested on suspicion of DUI and gross vehicular manslaughter. Anyone with information about this crash is asked to contact Fullerton police at 714-738-6716.
I offer my deepest sympathies to the family members and friends of Kelly Pham for their tragic and heartbreaking loss. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers.
According to California Highway Patrol’s 2009 Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System (SWITRS), there were 62 fatalities and 1,340 injuries involving Orange County DUI collisions. Also, countywide, during the same year, 31 passengers were killed and 4,850 were injured in car accidents.
California DUI Laws
Under California law, it is illegal to operate a motor vehicle 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.” A driver whose act of driving under the influence results in the death of another will likely face vehicular manslaughter charges under California Penal Code Section 191.5 (a).
If the driver, Drake, is determined to have been at fault here, he could not only face criminal charges, but also be held civilly liable for Pham’s wrongful death. The family of a deceased drunk driving victim, in such cases, can seek compensation for medical expenses, funeral costs, lost future income, loss of companionship, and other related damages.
The family would be well-advised to contact a reputed Orange County personal injury lawyer, who has a successful track record of financially pursuing drunk and negligent drivers. For more information about the dangers of driving under the influence, please visit the Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) web site at www.madd.org.
Lost a family member in an Orange County DUI car accident? Want to know your rights? Want to know what your case is worth? Want compensation? Want justice? Want to ensure the same thing doesn’t happen to another family?
Call your best friends in the legal industry after a fatal Fullerton car accident. Call 800-259-6373. The call is free. The advice may be priceless.
Call a Bisnar Chase Personal Injury Attorneys Personal Injury Lawyers, LLP for a free professional evaluation of your rights by attorneys who have been representing families of deceased accident victims since 1978. You will experience award winning representation and outstanding personal service by a compassionate and understanding law firm in a comfortable environment.
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Do you think that convicted drunk drivers should have to use ignition interlock devices (breathalizers installed in their vehicle) before they start their cars after their first offense?