Upgraded Charges Expected After Death of Child Following DUI Crash
On September 29, a child passed away two days after a three-vehicle crash involving a suspected drunk driver in Decatur.
5-year-old Miles Jenness died on Saturday after Michelle Wierson allegedly crashed her vehicle into the car Jenness was riding in on Thursday, September 27. Jenness’ mother suffered moderate injuries in the accident, but no one else was injured.
Wierson’s car then traveled through the intersection and struck a third vehicle. At this point, Weirson exited her vehicle and, according to a police spokeswoman, “began behaving erratically and running in and out of traffic.” An on-duty MARTA police officer and an off-duty DeKalb County police officer stopped and tried to help and Wierson attacked the off-duty officer.
Wierson was initially charged with DUI, serious injury by vehicle, reckless driving, and following too closely. However, additional charges are pending after the news of Jenness’ death.
Legal Recourse For Families of Drunk Driving Victims in Georgia
Attorney contributor Brian Kent of CrimeVictim.Attorney helps DUI crash victims and their families recover the financial compensation they deserve for the damages they’ve suffered. We’ve asked him to add some information on the legal options available to drunk driving victims in Georgia:
In Georgia and many other states, the victims of alcohol-related accidents may have the option to file two types of lawsuits: a personal injury (or wrongful death, for family members of fatal accident victims) lawsuit against the drunk driver and a dram shop lawsuit against the alcohol vendor who provided alcohol to the drunk driver before the accident.
Additionally, Georgia allows social hosts (such as house party hosts) to be held liable for alcohol-related accidents under certain conditions.
In Georgia, alcohol vendors and social hosts can be held liable for alcohol-related injuries and deaths if the vendor or host:
- “willfully, knowingly, and unlawfully” serves alcohol to a minor under age 21, or
- “knowingly” serves alcohol to someone who is “noticeably intoxicated”, and
- the vendor knows that the minor or intoxicated person will soon be driving a motor vehicle.
If you or someone you love has recently been injured or killed after being hit by a drunk driver, you can learn more about your family’s legal options by speaking to an experienced DUI victims lawyer.