Personal Injury Blog

Manslaughter Indictment Over Fatal Indian Head Highway Crash Shows Inner Workings of Criminal, Civil Auto Accident Cases

By: Dan Hausman

On January 24, 2019, a man was indicted on three counts of vehicular manslaughter for his role in a fatal rear end collision. The crash occurred on Indian Head Highway in Prince George’s County in December of 2018. The man is alleged to have been driving drunk, crashing into a vehicle in front of him, and causing the death of three children in that vehicle. Time will tell if the man is guilty of the charges he faces and will be held accountable by the criminal justice system.

The police took their time in charging the man with a crime because they wanted to make sure they had the evidence to indict on the most serious charge possible. In 1990, the Maryland Court of Appeals ruled that multiple charges at different dates amounted to prohibited double jeopardy, which has made Maryland police more carefully consider evidence before committing to charges. There are often intricate legal reasons why things are done a certain way that may seem counter-intuitive to people who are not attorneys.

The loss of young lives in the December incident is an absolute tragedy. Incomprehensibly, Indian Head Highway has been an extremely dangerous road for over a decade. Since 2008, there are reports of more than 60 deaths in crashes on Indian Head Highway. Something must be done by authorities and our community to make safety on that highway a priority. Until Indian Head Highway becomes safe, the best bet could be to avoid it if at all possible.

Car Accidents: Criminal vs. Civil Cases

While this blog spoke about the criminal justice system, the civil justice system is also implicated by the crash and is a separate area of law which the victims and their families could use to receive monetary compensation for their losses.

When tragedy occurs, you can turn to the attorneys of Chaikin, Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel, P.C. to help you recover. We have been serving the DMV for over 45 years to help victims of car crashes. Whether there is a wrongful death, a serious brain injury, broken bones, or only sprains and bruises, we can help. Whether the cause is drunk driving, failing to pay attention or obey traffic sign, or even if there is a dispute over who caused the collision, we can help.

Please call (888) 885-5638 or contact us online for a FREE consultation.