The Indiana state prosecutor’s office has determined that a fatal accident involving a church bus that occurred over the summer was not due to any criminal conduct. Therefore the driver of the bus will not be criminally charged for his role in the accident. According to a story by USA Today, the driver of the bus was issued a citation because the light was red when the bus entered an intersection shortly before the accident. However, the prosecutor’s office explained that the red-light citation, without more, is insufficient to press criminal charges against the driver.
The accident, that occurred back in July of this year, resulted in three fatalities and 26 injuries. According to another USA Today report, the bus was returning from a camp in Michigan to Colonial Hills Baptist Church in Indianapolis. The bus was about a mile from its destination when the driver ran a red light at a high rate of speed. Then, shortly after, the driver was unable to negotiate a turn, resulting in the bus toppling over, injuring many and killing three.
Civil Remedies May Still Be Available to the Victims
The victims and their families may have been disappointed to hear that there were no criminal charges filed against the driver of the bus. However, this does not necessarily mean that they will be left uncompensated for their injuries and losses. The victims may very well still have the ability to file a civil cause of action based on the driver’s failure to operate the bus in a safe and responsible manner. Such a suit would be under the legal theory of “negligence.”
The law of negligence, as it is applied in Indiana courts, acts to compensate the victims of accidents caused by another’s lack of care. While the law of negligence applies in many day-to-day situations, it is very commonly applied in the context of a traffic accidents.
Elements of Negligence in Automobile Accident Cases
In order to recover in a negligence case in Indiana, the injured party, or “plaintiff,” must prove that the other party was negligent and that the other party’s negligence caused the plaintiff’s injuries.
Evidence like a traffic citation, police report, or eyewitness testimony can go a long way toward convincing an Indiana jury that the other party was negligent. Expert testimony from various scientists and doctors-as well as common sense-is often helpful for the jury to determine if the party’s actions caused the injuries.
Have You Been Injured in an Auto Accident?
If you have been injured in an auto accident, you may have the right to monetary compensation. To find out what rights you may have, and to determine if there are any pending deadlines, contact an experienced Indiana accident attorney today.
The personal injury law firm of Parr Richey Frandsen Patterson Kruse has a team of dedicated accident attorneys ready to speak with you about your case. Click here, or call 866-987-7277 today to speak with an attorney.
Valparaiso Iron Worker Dies in Workplace Accident, Indiana Accident Attorneys, November 19, 2013.
Two Motorcyclists Killed in Possible Alcohol-Related Crash, Indiana Accident Attorneys, September 23, 2013.