Readers of this blog know that jaywalking is a potentially dangerous activity. Not only can a pedestrian get hurt or killed when being struck by a vehicle; but if the victim is outside a crosswalk, the driver usually won’t be held responsible for the accident. However, there is one notable exception: when the driver happens to be drunk.
This was apparently the case in a deadly auto-pedestrian accident near Nellis Air Force Base over the weekend. On Saturday night right after 11pm in North Las Vegas, a 54-year old woman was trying to cross Craig Road near Las Vegas Boulevard. The woman and her male companion were not in a marked crosswalk when they stepped into the roadway. A 38-year old woman driving a Nissan sport utility vehicle hit the female pedestrian, who was taken to University Medical Center. The victim later succumbed to her injuries. The SUV driver was arrested by Metro Police on charges of driving under the influence.
Under normal circumstances, the driver would likely not be held responsible for the pedestrians’ death because the victim was outside of a crosswalk when the accident occurred (here’s the ironic part: there is a marked crosswalk at the intersection of Craig Road and Las Vegas Boulevard). But if the 38-year old woman is convicted on DUI charges, she may very well be found at least partially liable for the death of the victim. In the latter case, the surviving family members of the 58-year old woman could file a wrongful death lawsuit against the SUV driver.