Woman Involved in Car Accident Charged with Fourth DUI

A three-car accident in St. Petersburg left an 81 year old woman with a broken neck and broken back.  The Tampa Tribune  reported last week that one of the drivers involved in the auto accident, 22 year-old Colleen Ludlow, was traveling west on 22ndAvenue at about 3:20 p.m. on a Thursday afternoon when her car struck a curb and two other vehicles.  Most disturbing is that Ludlow had her two year old daughter in the car at the time of the auto accident and refused to submit to a breathalyzer test.  After the car accident, Ludlow was charged with drunk driving with serious bodily injury, child abuse and driving with a suspended or revoked license in a wreck causing injury.   Her bail was set at $15,150.00.  The authorities reported that they found a half bottle of vodka and two empty beer bottles in Ludlow’s car.

However, according the article in the Tampa Tribune, this isn’t the first time Ludlow has been accused of driving under the influence.  In fact, she has been charged multiple times for DUI, with the first occurring in 2006.

At Perenich, Caulfield, Avril & Noyes, we handle the civil aspect of auto accidents involving drunk drivers.  In a case like this, it is important to determine what parties would potentially be liable to those injured as a result of this auto accident.  One thing to always consider in a case like this is whether there is a bar or other establishment that may be liable under Florida’s dram shop laws.  For instance, Florida Statute Section 768.125 provides that ” a person who knowingly serves a person habitually addicted to the use of any or all alcoholic beverages may become liable for injury or damage caused by or resulting from the intoxication of such minor or person.”  This means that if an establishment sold Ludlow the alcohol knowing that Ludlow was habitually addicted to alcohol, and that caused injury to the parties injured in this case, such an establishment could be liable to the injured parties involved.  Additionally, a personal injury attorney acting on your behalf should determine if your case is appropriate for seeking punitive damages.

If you have been injured in an auto accident involving a drunk driver, contact the attorneys atPerenich, Caulfield, Avril & Noyes, P.A. today for a free consultation.

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