Joyriding has been a traffic issue almost since automobiles were invented. While the term itself does not absolutely imply criminal activity, behaviors such as speeding, reckless driving, and consuming alcohol are often associated with joyriding. But very often, joyriding can have dangerous consequences – especially if the person driving does not have a license.
Sadly, a teenager lost his life this week in a joyriding accident in Aurora. Early Tuesday morning just before 1:45am, a 2012 Chevy Malibu was driving at a high rate of speed on Stonebridge Road in a residential section of Aurora. Four 15-year old boys were in the vehicle when it left the roadway, struck a curb, went airborne, and crashed into a house’s garage on Hamman Way, near Brooks Elementary School off of Indian Trail Road. One of the boys was ejected from the car and was pronounced dead at the scene. He had just been named to his high school’s varsity football team.
Although the investigation is continuing, police do not believe alcohol was a factor in the fatal Illinois auto accident. As of yet, no criminal charges have been filed against the underage driver of the Malibu. According to authorities, the driver had taken his father’s car without getting permission. Even so, it is the father who could be named as a defendant in any wrongful death lawsuit filed by the parents of the deceased teen. Since the driver is a minor, Illinois law dictates that his parents must be named as defendants in civil legal action.
This lawsuit could allow the family to receive reimbursement for burial costs as well as damages for mental anguish and loss of companionship. A jury may also award the plaintiffs compensation for the estimated future wages the boy would have earned as an adult throughout his lifetime had the crash never occurred.