It was undoubtedly a bittersweet day when a 33-year-old man was sentenced for hitting a pedestrian with his car and fleeing the accident scene. But while the driver was held accountable for his reckless and deplorable actions on the day of the accident, there is no punishment or court decision that can bring back the man who was killed after getting hit by the driver.
According to reports, the driver was either in the process of tracking down heroin or had just taken the drug when he sped down the road in his car, raced through an intersection and struck the man. The victim had pushed his girlfriend out of the path of the vehicle and ended up saving her life by risking his own.
The man suffered serious injuries after being hit. He spent nearly two weeks in the hospital undergoing surgeries and recovery efforts. Tragically, however, the man succumbed to his injuries and passed away.
The driver was ultimately arrested and charged in the hit-and-run fatal crash. He was recently sentenced to state prison for 25 years to life.
Of course the sentence cannot undo the tragic crash that affected so many lives. However, criminal penalties, just like financial damages, can give a victim's loved ones a sense of closure and justice.
People who have lost a loved one in a fatal accident caused by a reckless or negligent driver may want to strongly consider their legal options for holding that party accountable. There may be no way to undo the devastation that has been suffered, but it can be of some comfort and relief to know that the appropriate person is being held responsible.
Source: Merced Sun-Star, "Walden gets 25-to-life. 'I can't grasp the depth of your selfishness,' judge tells him," Andy Furillo, June 13, 2014