Many Colorado residents ride their bicycles for both transportation and recreation throughout the state. While driving on streets or roads with other traffic, they certainly expect that motorists will be aware of their presence and travel near them with precaution. Unfortunately, this was not the case for a cyclist in Montrose County, where he was struck and killed by an impaired driver. The victim’s family may decide to pursue wrongful death litigation due to the alleged actions of the driver.
A 22-year-old man was riding his bicycle on a Montrose street around 6 a.m. A witness apparently spotted a sport utility vehicle swerving before passing him at a high rate of speed. The witness stated that the SUV, driven by an 18-year-old man, then collided with a bicyclist riding near the curb as the driver attempted to pass another vehicle in the right lane of traffic. The impact caused the rider of the bicycle over the top of a car before landing in the road. Another witness confirmed the actions of the SUV driver and also reported that he sped away from the scene after the crash.
Officers from the Montrose Police Department reported that the driver said that he had been drink beer. He allegedly stated in an affidavit that he was mad at the cyclist for being on the road so early in the morning. Sobriety testing revealed that the driver was under the influence at the time of the accident. After impounding the driver’s SUV, marijuana paraphernalia was located.
After being transported and treated at a nearby hospital, the bicyclist later died as a result of his injuries. The driver of the SUV was charged with vehicular homicide and careless driving causing death. Other charges included driving under the influence, possession of marijuana and underage consumption of alcohol.
The death of a loved one is horrific under any circumstances. However, when a death is caused by the negligence of another person, it is all the more tragic. Families who experience such a loss may choose to file a wrongful death claim against the party deemed responsible. A Colorado personal injury attorney will work with families to pursue the most favorable outcome in the proceedings.