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Truck driver gets plea deal in 2015 car crash

A truck driver who reportedly was involved in a 2015 crash that killed four occupants of a limousine touring the New York wine country will not face jail time. The New York driver will instead only have his license suspended, and he will have to pay a fine in connection with the car accident. Family members of the victims are reportedly outraged that the driver will not face more serious consequences. The driver took a plea deal in the case.

Authorities report that four female victims, all in their early 20s, died when their limo driver pulled out in front of the truck driver as they were leaving a winery in Long Island. Four other women who were riding in the limo suffered injuries and were hospitalized, as was the limo driver. Police measured the truck driver's blood alcohol content (BAC) about 90 minutes after the collision -- it registered at 0.06 percent.

Prosecutors said that the man's BAC would not have qualified as drunk driving. Further, they argued that accident reconstruction demonstrated that the truck driver was not at fault for the crash. Instead, it appears that the limo driver attempted a legal -- but very dangerous -- U-turn in front of the truck. Criminal charges were dropped against the limo driver because of procedural issues with his case.

No matter the outcome in criminal court, victims' families can still seek redress for the car accident through the civil courts. The burden of proof for identifying a negligent driver is far lower than the bar that is set for determining whether someone is guilty of criminal charges. Personal injury lawyers can provide additional answers for victims and their families after this type of auto accident.

Source: CBS New York, "Victims’ Families Call Plea Deal For Driver In Deadly Long Island Limo Crash A Disgrace," April 26, 2017

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