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Texas student bragged about drinking hours before DUI crash

The Texas Department of Transportation reported more than 3,000 fatal traffic accidents statewide in 2012. Nearly 1,100 people died and over 16,000 victims were injured in crashes involving drunk drivers.

A 21-year-old college student is blamed for a recent car accident that killed two people and sent five others to hospitals. The Austin area crash occurred in late December, when a pickup truck crashed into the back of a Toyota Prius at high speed.

A 60-year-old kindergarten teacher and her 18-year-old son were killed.

The truck also hit another vehicle coming the opposite way on F.M. 620. Four of the five people taken to medical facilities are still hospitalized. Reports did not give the identities or medical conditions of the surviving victims.

A witness apparently tried to help the pickup driver out of his vehicle, before the driver ran away wearing just a towel. Law enforcers later caught up with the "uncooperative" and "indifferent" driver at an apartment complex and took him to a hospital.

Police reported a chemical test was performed on the driver’s blood, with a sample taken from a medical procedure. The young man earlier refused to be tested. The results showed the truck driver’s blood alcohol content level was more than three times the state intoxication limit.

The driver, a University of Alabama student, was charged with 19 felonies. Two hours before the teacher and her son died, the defendant sent out a tweet glorifying alcohol consumption.

In a liability claim for personal injury or wrongful death, plaintiffs must prove a defendant intended to harm or harmed through recklessness or negligence. While it’s not mandatory that a defendant face criminal charges to be tried in a civil court, proven wrongdoing can add strength to a plaintiff’s claim.

DUI injuries and deaths are preventable. Negligent drivers choose to drink and may be held accountable financially for victims’ injuries and families’ hardships.

Source: My Fox Austin, "Police: DUI driver in fatal crash was more than 3 times over legal limit" No author given, Dec. 31, 2013

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