Drunk Driver Who Killed Three On I-85 Faces Murder Charges
In July 2015, three people died as a result of a head on crash on I-85. Chandler Kania, a student at UNC, is accused of driving his Jeep Wrangler the wrong way down I-85 for a number of miles before crashing into the vehicle of Felicia Harris. Kania, who is 20 years old, had a blood alcohol content of 0.17 that evening. Kania now faces three counts of second-degree murder as well as many other criminal charges.
Criminal convictions can have a serious effect on civil litigation. If Kania is convicted and found to be responsible for these deaths, a wrongful death suit is likely to be successful. This is on account of a legal doctrine called “collateral estoppel” or “issue preclusion.” This doctrine states that once a fact has been judicially determined, the issue cannot be re-litigated in a subsequent case. So in the case of Kania, if a criminal court determined that he was responsible for these deaths, this fact would not have to be re-litigated in the civil case. There would likely be other facts that would still have to be litigated, but this large one would already be decided. The attorneys at Glenn, Mills, Fisher & Mahoney have handled many wrongful death cases. Contact us for a free consultation if you have been injured or have lost a loved one from the negligence of a driver.
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