One person has tragically lost his life following a car accident in Littleton on July 7. The 19-year-old man, a resident of Lakewood, Colorado, was a passenger in a vehicle that crashed. For the moment, no charges have been filed against the driver, but as with most fatal car accidents, the crash is still being investigated by police.
According to the accident report, a total of four people were in the vehicle at the time of the crash: a 19-year-old male driver, a 17-year-old male passenger, a 15-year-old male passenger and the aforementioned victim. The vehicle was headed south around 11:30 p.m. when the driver appeared to lose control while navigating a left-hand turn. This caused the vehicle to leave the right side of the road.
The car crashed into a traffic control sign and rolled, ejecting three of the four occupants of the vehicle. None of the individuals in the car were wearing seat belts at the time of the accident. The 19-year-old passenger was pronounced dead, and the other three were taken to local hospitals with serious injuries. Charges are anticipated against the driver, as speed is believed to have been a factor in the crash.
Criminal charges filed against drivers in fatal car accidents are not the only censures these individuals can face. Colorado law allows the injured parties (or their parents) and the family of the deceased to file personal injury and/or wrongful death lawsuits against the driver, as well as anyone else with ownership interest in the vehicle. While these suits are handled in civil court, evidence gathered by police for the criminal charges can be used to support a claim for monetary damages.