Firefighter Exit From Scene of Accident Results in Wrongful Death Lawsuit

Law Firm Newswire



Albuquerque, NM (Law Firm Newswire) February 9, 2011 – Even those in positions of authority have moments they regret. This hit and run case is one such example.

Hit and run crashes are horrendous, particularly if the offender is not caught. In this case, the perpetrator was caught. It turned out he was an off-duty firefighter. The man had been speeding and texting at the same time when he hit and killed a Guatemalan immigrant. He hot-footed it away from the scene and abandoned his SUV just a block from his home.

“When he got home, he then called firefighters and the police, largely because his brother was a detective. His brother came to pick him up and took him to the firehouse, but he fled once more. He was MIA for another four hours before the detective was able to talk him into surrendering himself to the police,” said Scott Atkinson, a New Mexico injury lawyer and New Mexico wrongful death lawyer with the Atkinson Law Firm, Ltd.

While he did admit he owned the SUV, he refused to answer any other questions and left the police station without taking a breathalyzer test. The subsequent police report indicated there was human DNA that belonged to the victim on the SUV. Ultimately, the firefighter was charged with fleeing the scene of an accident and not reporting it, criminally negligent homicide, reckless driving and several other traffic violations. He was released on a $50,000 bond.
In court, the defense stated the immigrant was drunk and ran into the side of the firefighter’s SUV. That may be difficult to prove, that a drunk pedestrian ran into the side of the SUV so hard that he killed himself. However, the facts will no doubt speak for themselves.

“In this situation, the family of the immigrant could file a wrongful death lawsuit to obtain compensation for the loss of their family member due to the negligence of the off duty firefighter. While it may take some time to convince the jury the SUV driver was at fault, the evidence collected by the plaintiff’s lawyer will create a clear and compelling picture of what really happened that night when the immigrant lost his life,” Atkinson said.

Wrongful death lawsuits are not about revenge; they are about getting compensation for the family left behind so they can continue on with their life. Without compensation, they may be left high and dry with no income; income that the deceased provided.

“Since these types of lawsuits are civil in nature, they are filed under the State’s Wrongful Death Statute. Be aware that there is a time limit for filing cases like this. If you have a wrongful death case, it would be best to act quickly. If you want to call my office for information, I would be pleased to help you,” Atkinson said, a New Mexico injury lawyer and New Mexico wrongful death lawyer with the Atkinson Law Firm, Ltd.

To learn more about New Mexico Personal Injury attorney Scott Atkinson visit

Atkinson Law Firm, LTD
9400 Holly Ave. NE, Bldg. 4
Albuquerque, New Mexico 87122
Phone: 505.944.1050

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