In 2008, Rachel Elliott was killed when she was hit by a car in Corona, California. Elva Diaz, the driver of the vehicle that hit Elliott, was convicted last week of involuntary gross vehicular manslaughter, because she was allegedly intoxicated at the time of the pedestrian accident in Corona.
Diaz, who is facing sentencing of up to 10 years imprisonment for the conviction, is 32 years old. She was found not guilty on the charge of 2nd degree murder, which would have carried even stiffer sentencing. In a case like this, without a previous DUI conviction, it is very difficult to get a conviction on the 2nd degree murder charge, which Diaz’s criminal defense attorney said was excessive. Diaz will be sentenced on August 5, 2011.
It has been reported that the reason for the delay in the trial was that Diaz, who was apparently released on bond, fled to Mexico after the Corona pedestrian accident. This could be a reason why prosecutors tried for stiffer charges against Diaz.
If Diaz had automobile insurance at the time of the Corona accident, Elliott’s family would have been entitled to make a Corona wrongful death claim against Diaz’ insurance coverage and any excess damages would be claimed against Diaz personally. However, in such circumstances, many drivers cannot afford to pay any excess amounts over their insurance coverage. In these circumstances, a personal injury attorney will look for uninsured motorist or underinsured motorist coverage that may apply.
Our personal injury law office handles California wrongful death claims and pedestrian accident claims in Corona and throughout California. Anyone injured in a pedestrian accident or who has had a loved one killed in an accident, is advised to call our Corona personal injury attorneys for a free consultation to see if we can help you.