Heymann & Fletcher

Police lieutenant sentenced in fatal car accident

Most would agree that no one knows the rules of the road better than New Jersey and other police officers do. They must not only enforce the traffic laws, but also set an example for all citizens by following the laws they enforce. Unfortunately, even police officers do not always follow the rules, and that can have fatal consequences in the form of a car accident.

For one North Brunswick police lieutenant, not only did he not follow the rules of the road, but also he did not follow the rules of his department. This cavalier attitude for the law cost the life of another police officer. The lieutenant decided to go for a joyride on Route 130 in a private vehicle with a fellow officer while on duty.

The lieutenant was driving a Dodge Viper at high speed when he lost control of the sports car. The car slammed into a power pole, killing his passenger. The lieutenant has been on administrative suspension since the 2008 crash. The 19-year police veteran made a plea bargain with the court to serve three years in prison, resign from the police force and forfeit his police pension.

The family of the deceased police officer may not feel this is punishment enough for their loss. Even though no one can predict when he or she may be in a car accident, the officer that was driving that day put himself and his passenger at unnecessary risk. The family of the deceased officer may wish to file a wrongful death claim against the now former police lieutenant for damages. A successful claim could lead to the award of damages permitted by New Jersey law such as pain and suffering and funeral and burial costs.

Source: nj.com, North Brunswick police officer to be sentenced today in joy-ride crash that killed fellow cop, Anthony G. Attrino, Feb. 27, 2014

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