Attorney Matthew R. Arnold answering the question: “Are the laws or rules applying to a wrongful death claim different from a personal injury not involving death?”
A terrible accident this past August in Asheville, North Carolina left a newlywed couple dead and police officers searching for clues about what could have gone wrong. The couple, William Reid and his pregnant wife Jamie Reid, were both killed in the August 11th crash just outside Asheville while the two were being driven in a chauffeured Lincoln Town Car.
At the time, police officials in Asheville said that it appeared the Town Car the couple was riding in left the highway and crashed into a tree. The driver of the Town Car, Rodney Koon, was suspected as a possible cause of the terrible accident, but an investigation still needed to be conducted to confirm what role Koon played in the fatal crash.
The crash struck a nerve given that the victims were so young, only 25 and 26, and appeared to have so much life left to live. The two had gotten married only a few months before the accident and soon thereafter became pregnant. They were both visiting North Carolina for a friend’s wedding and excited to return home to Pennsylvania where family and friends were waiting on them.
Just this past week, authorities in Asheville revealed that Koon would now be facing criminal charges in connection with their death. Koon has since been charged with two counts of felony death by vehicle and one count of DWI. Police have said that Koon was not under the influence of alcohol at the time of the crash, saying only that it was a “substance.” One of the victim’s mothers has come forward and said she heard that the driver had traces of cocaine in his system at the time of the crash.
Jamie Reid’s mother said that though Koon may not have intended to murder her daughter, that was the result. Reid’s mom said that the couple’s family and friends will have to spend the rest of their lives living with the enormous loss and she hopes that Koon also is forced to face serious consequences for his irresponsible actions.
Given the laws in North Carolina it’s likely that Koon will face serious criminal penalties for his bad choices. The law says that any driver who causes the death of another person while impaired faces felony death by vehicle charges which can result in years behind bars. So far Koon has been released on $55,000 bond while he awaits trial. The family of Jamie Reid says they want to be heard in the case and intend to travel to North Carolina to read a victim impact statement. The family says they want to send a message to others about the harm that irresponsible choices can cause others, an attempt to ensure other families never have to face the devastation that they have had to grapple with.
If you, or someone you know, have any questions regarding personal injury claims, please feel free to contact the experienced personal injury attorneys and lawyers in Charlotte, North Carolina at Arnold & Smith, PLLC for a free consultation. Call at 704-370-2828.
About the Author:
Matthew Arnold is a Managing Member with Arnold & Smith, PLLC where he focuses his practice on Personal Injury, Family Law and Business Litigation. Mr. Arnold began his career handling insurance defense litigation for several major insurance companies. He also went on to handle business litigation cases and high value mortgage fraud cases, primarily in Superior Court.
Mr. Arnold grew up in Charlotte, graduating from Providence Senior High School and continued his education at Belmont Abbey College on a basketball scholarship. After graduating cum laude he attended law school at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill on a full academic scholarship. In his spare time, Mr. Arnold enjoys golfing and spending time on the North Carolina Coast with his wife and three young children: two daughters and one son.
“Mother of Phillipsburg alumnus killed in North Carolina wreck says she’s glad driver faces charges,” by Sarah Wojcik, published at LehighValleyLive.com.
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