Police arrested Andrew Johnson of Panama City Beach after a suspected drunk driving accident that left a motorcyclist in critical condition on Monday night. The accident occurred at around 7:30 p.m. at the intersection of Back Beach Road and Richard Jackson Boulevard in Panama City Beach. Panama City Beach Police arrived at the scene and found 59-year-old motorcyclist Eric Mann laying in the road, injured and unresponsive.
Police say Mann was driving west on Back Beach Road when a car driven by Andrew Johnson tried to make a U-turn and crashed into the motorcycle.
Mann was not wearing a helmet and suffered trauma to his face and head. He was brought to Bay Medical Center and remains in critical condition.
Attorney contributor Michael Haggard represents the victims of drunk drivers. Here is his perspective on third-party liability for drunk driving accidents in Florida:
In Florida and all states, people who are injured in accidents caused by others often have grounds for a personal injury claim against the at-fault person. In addition, Florida and most other states have dram shop laws which permit victims injured by intoxicated people to file lawsuits against the alcohol vendor who served the intoxicated person, depending on circumstances.
According to Florida dram shop laws, alcohol vendors can be held liable for DUI accident injuries in two types of situations:
The victims of drunk drivers in Florida may have grounds for a lawsuit against both the driver who hit them and the alcohol vendor who served that driver. If you or someone you love was recently hit by a drunk driver, we recommend discussing your legal options with an experienced DUI victim lawyer.