This week, Illinois and the rest of the nation commemorated Veterans Day, a holiday set aside to recognize those men and women who served in the armed forces. People across the state honored vets with parades, speeches, and other public gatherings. Also, many businesses showed their support by offering free or discounted meals, goods, or services to U.S. veterans. But one man is spending Veterans Day in jail after apparently running over an elderly vet last week in Chicago.
On Friday morning around 7am, an 87-year old former Marine was trying to cross North Broadway at the intersection of Lawrence Avenue in Uptown. But according to Chicago Police, a 26-year old man driving a Pontiac ran a red light and struck the elderly pedestrian, who suffered from brain bleed after being tossed four feet into the air. The Pontiac fled the scene, but its driver was located shortly thereafter. Authorities measured the suspect’s blood alcohol level at .216, which is over 2 1/2 times the legal limit in Illinois. He is now being held in a Cook County jail on $350,000 bond and faces charges of aggravated driving under the influence as well as leaving the scene of an auto accident.
If the former Marine should survive his injuries, he would have solid grounds to file a personal injury lawsuit against the 26-year old man. The suit would allow the elderly man to be reimbursed for hospital expenses as well as any future medical care costs resulting from the vet’s deteriorating health as a result of the Illinois auto accident. However, should the victim succumb to his injuries, his surviving heirs would have the right to file a wrongful death lawsuit against the DUI suspect. In this type of case, a jury could order the defendant to reimburse the family for burial expenses and any unpaid hospital costs, and he might also have to pay monetary damages for pain and suffering and loss of care or companionship.