Two women were injured after being hit by an alleged drunk driver while standing at a bus stop in the Gramercy Park section of Manhattan on July 26. The victims were ages 71 and 31 and were waiting at East 23rd Street and Third Ave when the vehicle crashed into the stop and struck them at around 9:30 p.m.
According to news coverage by ABC 7 in NYC, witnesses said that the 41-year-old driver, Mihai Kelemen of Yonkers, lost control of his car while attempting to turn right from Third Avenue onto East 23rd Street.
Kelemen’s vehicle jumped the curb and crashed into the bus stop. The victims were both brought to Bellevue Hospital and treated for non-life-threatening injuries.
Kelemen has been charged with driving while intoxicated and refusing to take a breathalyzer test.
Attorney contributor, Laurence Banville, is an experienced lawyer representing victims in drunk driving lawsuit settlements. Here is what he has to say about the legal rights of these victims and families
When reckless individuals decide to drive drunk, they endanger the lives of everyone they pass by while they’re on the road. Pedestrians are especially vulnerable to serious and fatal injuries when a drunk driver causes an accident. It’s crucial that drunk drivers are held criminally responsible for their actions, but it’s also important to make sure their victims get the support they need.
In New York and most other states, alcohol vendors can be held liable for damages if they continue to serve a visibly intoxicated customer who ends up driving drunk and causing an accident. This is known as the dram shop law. Under this law, drunk driving accident victims who suffer serious injuries (and families of victims who are killed by drunk drivers) can often recover financial compensation from bars, restaurants, and other alcohol vendors for both economic and personal damages suffered as a result of the crash.
Of course, every drunk driving case is unique. Determining your legal options will require an overview of your case by an experienced crime victim lawyer.