Posted on March 6th, 2009 by Zane Cagle
After five DUIs, many wondered how Joseph Lynchard, 76, still had a drivers license. They also wonder what he was thinking on the Monday afternoon after Easter in 2005 when he decided to drive home from his brother’s bar after drinking more than a liter of red wine. This decision not only earned him his sixth DUI charge, but it took the life of Kathryn Black who was biking on the side of the road.
At the time of the accident, Black had stopped to rest and was straddling her bike. Lynchard, who had a BAC of 0.24 percent, slammed his car into her from behind. She died from catastrophic injuries to her brain, neck, and spine.
In a civil suit, Kathryn’s husband Hugh held Joseph directly responsible for his wife’s death. Furthermore, he alleged that Eddie Lynchard and his bar also bore responsibility because he knew that his brother frequently drank in excess at the bar and would drive home afterward. Despite his record of reckless behavior, he even financed the truck Joseph drove the day he killed Black.
According to court documents, by agreeing to look after his drunken brother, (after the previous 5 DUIs) Eddie assumed a legal obligation to control him. Therefore, when Eddie let Joseph drink to the point of intoxication and then drive home, he essentially aided and abetted the behavior that lead directly to Black’s death.
Although Eddie’s attorney claims that Joseph bears sole responsibility for the accident, he advised his clients to settle. Maxing out their personal, business, and auto insurance policies, the settlement came to $1.25 million.
Costing around $51 million annually, alcohol related traffic crashes are one of the most dangerous and tragic kinds of auto accidents. If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident involving a drunk driver, do not hesitate to contact an Auto Accident Attorney at Page Cagle in St. Louis. We handle cases all over Illinois and Missouri, ensuring that our clients get the maximum compensation possible. Call us today for a free consultation!