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Driver faces charges after fatal hit-and-run pedestrian accident

Following the death of a Georgia pedestrian on Oct. 6, another pedestrian recently died in the same area. This led to police urging passengers to cross only at crosswalks, but vehicle operators may also carry some responsibility for pedestrian accidents. It is not uncommon for a wrongful death claim to be filed by the surviving family members of a pedestrian who was the victim of a fatal pedestrian accident.

The driver deemed responsible for the recent fatality of a pedestrian is now facing criminal charges. Gwinnett County police were dispatched to the scene of an accident on a recent Thursday evening. Upon arrival, they found a seriously injured, unconscious pedestrian who was later pronounced deceased. There was an abandoned van nearby, and witnesses reported seeing the driver flee the scene after the impact.

It was determined that the northbound driver struck the pedestrian when he made a left turn. Without checking on the victim or calling emergency services, the driver took off on foot, abandoning his vehicle at the accident scene. Investigators later located and identified the 36-year-old driver of the van. He is now facing charges of vehicular homicide, hit-and-run and driving without a driver's license.

Under Georgia laws, the surviving family members are entitled to pursue financial relief through wrongful death litigation. However, negligence will have to be established on the part of the driver deemed responsible for the accident. In a case in which the pedestrian failed to use a crosswalk, the court may apportion negligence between the driver and the victim. If this happens, a monetary judgment will be awarded according to the percentage of negligence apportioned to the driver.

Source: Peachtree Corners, Ga. Patch, "Driver Charged in Hit-and-Run Pedestrian Fatality", Scott Bernarde, Oct. 23, 2015

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