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Pedestrian killed in Arizona hit-and-run event

A Sept. 12 accident in Tempe killed a pedestrian and left a man facing felony charges, authorities stated. Police reportedly suspect that a 29-year-old man was driving under the influence of alcohol at the time of the pedestrian accident.

According to the Tempe Police Department, the incident happened at about 9 p.m., when a Ford pickup truck hit a pedestrian near McClintock Drive and Apache Boulevard. The man struck in the pedestrian accident reportedly died after being transported to a hospital.

The 29-year-old man driving the Ford fled the accident scene without stopping and parked his vehicle on a nearby side street, police allege. Police found the truck and eventually made contact with the 29-year-old man. The man initially claimed that his vehicle had been stolen, denying involvement in the crash, but he later told police that he was driving the truck and left it on a side street when the engine stopped running. He allegedly had bloodshot eyes and smelled like alcohol following the collision, and police reportedly charged him with DUI, false reporting to police and felony hit-and-run vehicle collision.

In the event that significant evidence from this case were to substantiate the accusation that a drunk driver was responsible for the fatal accident, then the incident might give rise to not just criminal proceedings but also a civil lawsuit. For, certain family members of people who die in pedestrian accidents attributed to impaired driving may be entitled to restitution via civil action. By filing a wrongful death claim, bereaved family members may seek financial compensation for economic damages they suffered in relation to the accident, including funeral expenses and estate administration costs, as well as noneconomic damages, such as pain and mental suffering.

Source: azfamily.com, "Tempe police arrest man in fatal hit-and-run", Erika Flores, September 16, 2014

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