A nine-year-old girl suffered serious injuries on Sunday night, July 21st after being hit by a suspected drunk driver, according to East Aurora Police.
Police say that 30-year-old Erin Kuntz was driving west on Main Street in East Aurora when her vehicle left the road, struck a parked car, and then hit and seriously injured the young girl. According to the police, the girl was riding her scooter when the vehicle hit her.
An ambulance brought the girl to Oishei Children’s Hospital for treatment of serious injuries. Police said that her condition was improving on Monday.
Kuntz has been charged with vehicular assault, driving while intoxicated, marijuana possession, refusing to take a breathalyzer, driving a motor vehicle on a sidewalk, and failure to use a designated lane. She was arraigned and released on her own recognizance and will appear in court again on Wednesday, July 24.
Erie County District Attorney John Flynn has announced that he plans to have the woman’s license revoked.
Attorney contributor Laurence Banville represents drunk driving injury victims and their families in civil lawsuits. Here is Laurence with some general thoughts he gave The Legal Herald regarding the legal rights of those who have been hit by drunk drivers in the state of New York:
Like in all other injury cases, people who are injured by drunk drivers have the right to file a personal injury claim against the person who injured them. However, in New York and many other states, the legal options available to drunk driving injury victims don’t always stop here. In some cases, those injured by drunk drivers may also have the right to file a dram shop lawsuit against an alcohol vendor who provided alcohol to the driver prior to the crash.
In New York, a dram shop lawsuit can be filed against an alcohol vendor (such as a bar or nightclub) if the vendor served alcohol to someone who was either visibly intoxicated or someone who the vendor knew or had reason to believe was younger than 21 years old.
Each drunk driving injury case is unique and the available legal options depend on the circumstances surrounding the crash. If you or a loved one has recently been injured by a drunk driver, you can learn more about your legal rights by speaking with an experienced drunk driving injury victims attorney.