Kerry Welsh, 18, of West Covina, was killed in a suspected DUI collision after the vehicle she was driving was struck at an intersection. According to a report in The San Gabriel Valley Tribune, the fatal collision took place at the intersection of Vine and Hollenbeck avenues the night of May 29. Welsh was on her way to pick up her younger sister from a birthday party, family members said.
Police said Welsh was driving a silver Honda Accord south on Hollenbeck while a driver heading west on Vine struck her. The suspect did not stop at the stop sign and struck Welsh’s car, police said. Police arrested 24-year-old Gilberto Moralez on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs. The investigation is ongoing.
We offer our deepest condolences to the family members of Kerry Welsh for their heartbreaking loss. The Tribune reports that Welsh played varsity soccer at Glendora High School and was a 2020 graduate. Please keep her family, friends, and community in your thoughts and prayers.
Laws and Liability Issues
Based on this news report, it appears that the driver of the other vehicle was under the influence of both alcohol and drugs when he struck Welsh’s car. It is illegal under California Vehicle Code Section 23152 (a) to operate a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs. 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).
In such cases, in addition to facing criminal charges and penalties, DUI drivers can also be held financially responsible for the injuries, damages, and losses they cause. Families of deceased victims may be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit seeking compensation for damages including medical expenses, funeral costs, lost future income, pain and suffering, and loss of love, care, and companionship.
Injured victims and families would be well advised to contact an experienced Los Angeles DUI victims’ lawyer who will stay on top of the official investigation, make sure their legal rights and best interests are protected, and that they are fairly and fully compensated for their tremendous losses.