All it takes is a second, if that. One fraction of a second spent looking at a phone screen, adjusting the radio dial, reaching for a drink or a snack, a quick turn back to see what the kids are doing behind you–that’s all it takes to lead to a fatal car accident. Distracted driving is a crime that’s as dangerous–if not more so–than driving while intoxicated or driving under the influence. And if you’re found guilty of distracted driving, there’s a chance you’re going to jail.
On the other hand, what if you or a loved on is the victim of an accident caused by a distracted driver? It happens all too often.
Fatal Distracted Driving Accident in Baltimore County
In January 2021, Dylan Shields, a 29-year-old NSA security guard, was driving northbound on I-95 in Baltimore County when he rear-ended Luke Souders’ vehicle, causing a chain reaction that resulted in impact with two additional cars. Mr. Souders died from his injuries at the scene. Mr. Shields walked away from the accident with no injuries–physically, anyway. The accident occurred as Mr. Shields was using his phone to take selfies and Snapchat videos–while driving on cruise control at 65 miles per hour. This is nearly another level of distracted driving–this is negligence at its worst.
The Consequences of Distracted Driving
There’s no need to further explain the consequences of this accident for the Souders family as well as Luke Souders’ friends, who all have been dealing with grief and loss for over a year. For Mr. Shields, however, the consequences are much different.
In this case, Mr. Shields, who pleaded guilty to charges of vehicular manslaughter in early March of this year, was given a 10-year suspended sentence for negligent manslaughter; he is only required to serve six months in prison. The judge also handed down two years of supervised probation, meaning his suspended sentence could be revoked if he violates any conditions of the probationary period. In an instant, one life was taken, many others were irreparably broken, and another was forever scarred–all for selfies and a social media video clip.
How a Lawyer Can Help in Distracted Driving Accident Cases
In a tragic case such as this, it is be recommended that the family of the victim contact a personal injury attorney to handle any and all legal matters. The Lapidus Law Firm has years of experience handling distracted driving cases such as these, and we take pride in helping victims’ families with legal representation on behalf of their lost loved one. Once the distracted driving accident attorneys have the information they need, they will gather evidence and information from the police, doctors, medical examiners, and others to determine what happened and who caused the accident.
The case detailed above seems pretty clear-cut, and once the defendant pled guilty to the crime, the door could be opened for a wrongful death civil lawsuit to be filed. In a wrongful death lawsuit (or a personal injury lawsuit if the victim did not pass away), the victim’s family can sue for damages and expenses, including hospital bills, long-term medical care, vehicular damage, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more. A settlement won’t bring back a loved one, but it can go a long way in helping cover the mounting expenses the victim’s family now has to pay.
Call the Distracted Driving Accident Attorneys in MD and DC
If you or someone you know has lost a loved one in a distracted driving car accident, contact The Lapidus Law Firm at (202) 785-5111 or (301) 852-7500. We’ll go through the case and do everything in our power to secure a fair, reasonable settlement to help compensate for the expenses caused by the tragic accident. We invite you to set up your free, no-obligation consultation with our experienced attorneys today.