Very early in the morning this past Sunday, May 19th, a Harris County Sheriff deputy was killed by a drunk driver in north Houston. The deputy, who was in uniform but in his personal vehicle, was crossing an intersection when the drunk driver ran a red light and slammed into the side of the deputy’s car. Investigators say it does not appear that the drunk driver even attempted to stop or slow down before the impact. This wreck shows that no one, not even law enforcement officers, are immune from the dangers drunk drivers pose on the roads.
Drunk driving is a danger that we are all aware of and after an accident responsibility is usually pinned on the drunk driver (rightfully so); however, sometimes the drunk driver is not the only person who can be held legally responsible for a drunken driving accident. Texas has a law called the Texas Dram Shop Act which allows injured plaintiffs to bring a lawsuit against bars, clubs, or other liquor establishments that sell alcohol to a person who causes an accident. A plaintiff can recover damages from a liquor establishment under the Texas Dram Shop Act if they can prove that the driver who caused the accident was obviously intoxicated and presented a clear danger at the time the alcohol was provided to them. This law imposes more responsibility on businesses which sell liquor to monitor their customers and refuse to sell them alcohol if the customer appears too intoxicated. It is not yet known where the driver who killed the deputy obtained his alcohol but it will certainly be an important part of the investigation and any civil lawsuit that may be filed by the deputy’s family.
If you or a loved one has been injured or killed as a result of the negligence of a drunk driver in Texas, Ben Bronston and Associates is here to help. Our attorneys are experienced in helping drunken driving accident victims navigate the legal system to get the justice and compensation they deserve. Our firm has successfully handled numerous DWI related cases including those involving the Texas Dram Shop Act.