WFAA reports that just before 11 p.m. on June 6th Jose Castro was driving eastbound on I-20 when he crashed into two vehicles parked on the shoulder of the interstate. One person was inside of a vehicle and the other two people were outside of the vehicles when the crash happened. All three cars involved in the crash burst into flames, killing the three victims.
Castro was allegedly under the influence of alcohol at the time and was arrested on three counts of intoxication manslaughter. Police are coordinating with Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission to check if Castro could have been over-served at a bar before the crash.
Attorney contributor Marc Lenahan represents drunk driving victims and their families in civil lawsuits. He has offered to share his thoughts on the legal options for accidents like the one discussed above.
"In every state, victims of drunk driving accidents may have the right to a personal injury lawsuit against the driver. Additionally, in fatal drunk driving accidents, the victim's family may have a case against the driver for a wrongful death lawsuit. However, in a number of states including Texas, victims of drunk driving accidents may have grounds for a dram shop lawsuit against an alcohol vendor", stated Mr. Lenahan.
Mr. Lenahan continued, "There are a few violations of dram shop laws that may allow victims and their families to file a claim against an alcohol vendor. One violation is if the vendor sold alcohol to someone younger than 21. Another violation is if the vendor sold alcohol to someone who is already "obviously" intoxicated. Therefore, if a minor is sold alcohol or if an already intoxicated customer is over-served alcohol and causes harm to others, then the alcohol vendor may be held liable."
Establishing dram shop liability is complex, but if you or a loved one has been injured by a drunk driver you can learn more about your legal options by speaking with an experienced drunk driving crash victims lawyer.