A player for the Tennessee Titans was arrested recently after police responded to the scene of a car accident and smelled a strong odor of alcohol. The player, tight end Brandon Barden, apparently refused field sobriety testing or any blood alcohol level testing, so it is unclear what his level of intoxication was at the time of the accident.
His car went off of the road, hitting a ditch and flipping over before it landed on its side. The potential for serious injury in an accident like that is significant, and the driver is fortunate not to have been injured. Two passengers were with him at the time of the crash and they refused medical treatment at the scene of the accident, so it is not clear whether or not they suffered any injuries.
Innocent passengers and bystanders who are injured in a drunk driving car accident have a right to pursue compensation from the reckless driver. In cases where there are significant medical bills, victims are unable to work, or a permanent disability results, the victims can seek compensation from the driver who was responsible for those damages along with other types of damages.
Any civil action taken by the victims would be separate from action taken by the state in pursuing the traffic violations and DUI charge that have already been brought. No trial date is set yet, but if the player chooses to go to trial rather than entering a guilty plea, it is likely that this case will be in the news again as more details emerge about the conduct leading up to the car accident.
Source: The Tennessean, “Titans’ Brandon Barden arrested on DUI,” Jim Wyatt, Feb. 28, 2013.
More information about the rights of drunk driving accident victims can be found on our website.