Two years ago, on September 19, 2010, Jessica Raylene Wilson, 28, a pedestrian crossing a street against a signal with a friend, was hit along with her friend on the BYU campus in Provo by a motorist who police say was texting on his phone at the time of the collision. Now that driver, Cades Myles Krueger, 29 years of age, is being charged by the prosecuting attorney with negligent homicide, a class A misdemeanor and with texting while driving, a class C misdemeanor. According to KSL News, the court filing on this case states: “In reviewing Krueger’s phone records, his testimony and the surveillance video, Krueger was both sending and receiving text messages while driving and immediately prior to hitting the pedestrians.” The family of Jessica Wilson has already filed a civil action against Krueger in 2011.
Jessica Wilson sadly passed away following this texting-while-driving accident. Her friend a 27 year-old woman visiting from Estonia, was critically injured in the crash, but thankfully survived.
Texting while driving in Utah is illegal and is considered more potentially disabling to a motorist than driving while impaired. Because of the prevalence of texting while driving, a Utah auto accident attorney would be wise to inquire into possible cell phone distraction at the time of the accident. Evidence of using a cell phone, if found to exist, could greatly increase the culpability and therefore value of even a simple rear-end collision. While most such collisions are considered to be a case of simple negligence that can happen to anyone, when the inattention comes from fooling with the phone, it can turn the case into one where punitive damages may be warranted.
Ron Kramer is a Utah personal injury and disability attorney practicing law throughout Utah. Call the Kramer Law Group today at 801-601-1229 for a free consultation if you are in need of a Utah car accident attorney.