Drunk Driving Victim Settlements and Judgments

Hailey’s Story – Seattle personal injury attorney Dean Brett obtains $5.5 million verdict for Hailey French

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Attorney John Murphy obtained a $4.2 million verdict for two victims of a devastating collision caused when a drunk driver was racing with his drunk friend and plowed at a high speed head-on into the victims’ vehicle. One of John’s clients suffered severe head injuries and was in a coma; John’s other client needed surgery due to serious internal injuries. The at-fault driver, who had a blood-alcohol level of .11 at the time of the crash and who was driving without insurance due to a prior DUI conviction, was convicted of vehicular assault and was sentenced to 41 months in prison.

A towing company hired John Rideout, a well-known local drug addict, to drive one of its tow trucks. Rideout had previously been convicted of a series of crimes including Possession of Marijuana, Driving While License Suspended, Forgery, Theft, and Delivery of a Controlled Substance (Heroin). An admitted addict, Rideout shot up with heroin and smoked marijuana shortly before operating his tow truck. While impaired, Rideout drove his tow truck north on Zell Road in excess of the speed limit. He drifted over the center line and struck Landen Harless, a 14-year-old boy who was walking on the other lane with two companions facing traffic and pushing a bicycle.

Brett Law represented a client who was a professional baseball player in the early stages of his career. He was traveling with the team in Washington State, and several teammates went to a local pub after a game. After having a few drinks, the teammates began walking back to their hotel. During the walk, the group saw an unoccupied golf cart with the keys in the ignition. Poor judgment compelled them to take the golf cart. Our client was the passenger and one of his teammates drove the cart.

Travis was driving to work in his employer’s truck when a driver with marijuana in his system ran a stop sign and crashed into Travis. He suffered a fractured arm that required surgery to fix. The at-fault driver had no insurance, but attorney Bill Coats, from the Brett Law Bellingham office, was able to make a claim with the employer’s insurance company. After filing a lawsuit, the insurance company agreed to pay $180,000 to compensate Travis for his injury. Felix v. Nelson (2009)