Dead in the Night: The Tragedy of Drunk Driving

She was young, beautiful and only 20 years of age. She worked at Snoopy’s Hot Dogs and More and attended cosmetology school. She was driving the speed limit in a 1997 Mazda on Interstate 440 at 4:00 a.m. on a Sunday in October. She did not live to see the dawn.

He was 25 years old, driving a 2001 Chevrolet Malibu on the same road as she was, but going the wrong way. Impaired by drugs and alcohol, he was driving 82 miles an hour when his car slammed into hers head-on. He did not live to see the dawn, either.

David Viva Xicotencatl of Dudley died shortly after the accident in the hospital. Elizabeth Camille Bullock of Franklinton saw his car, braked and swerved to avoid it, but could not. Ms. Bullock died at the scene.

In North Carolina, legal consequences of drunk driving include:

  • $10,000 maximum fine
  • Forfeiture of driver license and vehicle
  • Revocation of license upon conviction, fines, penalties, incarceration and lowering of allowable blood alcohol concentration (BAC) for a period of years

In May, the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT)  notified North Carolina it was among states not in compliance with rigorous federal impaired driving standards. Without correction of laws addressing drunk driving, the state can be required to divert federal road construction funds toward efforts to reduce drunk driving.

David Viva Xicotencatl’s insurance is responsible for payment of the wrongful death claim. Elizabeth Camille Bullock’s grief-stricken family and circle of friends lost someone dear to them because he chose to drive impaired.

No drunk driving injury or fatality is an accident. Speak with experienced legal counsel in Raleigh if the poor choices of others hurt you, or the ones you love.

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