Many people across the valley have been following the story of the young girls who were struck by a car in North Las Vegas in October. One of the six-year olds later died from her injuries, and the other two were severely injured. Police later charged a 78-year old Henderson woman with failure to give full time and attention while driving, unlawfully passing vehicles stopped for a pedestrian in a crosswalk, and three counts of failure to yield the right of way to a pedestrian in a crosswalk.
This week, the elderly woman pled no contest to those five misdemeanor charges. Alice Alava was ordered to pay a $5,000 fine (which is the maximum amount permitted under the law) and surrender her driver’s license for two years. The parents and other family members of the girl who died said that they didn’t want to see the woman jailed for her actions.
Although the criminal case involving Alava has now been closed, she may still be subject to civil lawsuits filed by the parents of the girls. The two injured girls (who are sisters) continue to face challenges as they recover from their injuries; so their parents may choose to file a personal injury lawsuit against Alava in an effort to recover some of the hefty medical expenses which have undoubtedly been incurred by the family. In addition, the family of the girl who died continues to grieve and suffer emotionally (in fact, they expressed these sentiments during Alava’s court appearance). This means that they could file a wrongful death lawsuit against Alava in the hopes of not only being awarded damages for their pain and suffering, but also receiving compensation for lost future wages which would have been earned by the girl as well as reimbursement for burial and hospital expenses.