Child Injury from Automobile Accidents
Children, especially toddlers, are the most vulnerable to serious injury and wrongful death from car crashes. Even if placed in size and age-appropriate car seats, auto accidents are still a primary cause of child injury. One reason is that they never see an accident coming. Adult drivers and passengers often know in advance and can brace themselves for impact. Children do not and are unaware until the impact is already occurring.
Side impacts are especially destructive as their heads are jerked violently to the side causing substantial neck injury. The defense in preventing serious child injury from crashes is to make certain they are always placed in appropriately sized car safety seats and that these seats are properly secured inside the vehicle. As your child grows, the technology of safety seats can be defeated or negated if not the proper height and weight limit are exceeded. If you plan to have more children, save the seat for them. If not, you should consider donating the seat to others so that their children can be better protected. Everyone wants their child to be safe and guarded against harm. Another safety measure that can be taken is to position your child in the backseat and center of the vehicle. They will be better secured from frontal impacts as well as side crashes. Also, rear-end collisions can be better absorbed as the child will be effectively centered in the car.
Because children are so fragile and susceptible to injury, you should have your child examined by medical staff after any type of car accident, even if it seems relatively minor and you feel alright. For the reasons we reviewed above, children can be injured more easily than adults, and they may not be able to effectively communicate where or even how much they hurt. Crying can be confused as just being a baby or any number of other reasons. However, it could be from an undiagnosed injury. And, of course, head injury in children is also a major concern as symptoms may be missed and leave your child untreated until it is too late. It is better to be overly concerned and protective than to find out later about something serious. CT scans or an MRI can rule out head trauma. You should also watch for changes in sleep patterns or strange changes in mood or cognitive ability. Because children are so vulnerable, you as the parent need to be hyper-vigilant to rule out any latent injury that may be missed or even ignored by others.
Some states will allow immunity between husband and wife, parent and child, or any other type of familial relationship when it comes to domestic relations.
However, accordingly, South Carolina will give NO familial immunity to any crimes against the person or against their property. In other words, just because your family member committed the crime against you or your property, does not mean that you can not bring a case against them. Take for example, a case where there has been domestic abuse by one spouse against another. Not only can the state press charges, but through state law, the victim is also allow to sue for civil battery is he/she so chooses.
For crimes against the person- there is no family immunity-
There are no general principals of immunity that would apply in criminal prosecutions of parents and spouses for crimes against any other family members. Under old common law, a man could not be prosecuted for raping his wife, as they have engaged in intercourse previously. This is no longer the rule in South Carolina, any most states. The rule is now that there is no “marital exception,” that still applies, and a man can be charged by wither his wife or the state for domestic abuse in the form of any type of violence, including rape.
Moreover, South Carolina has a specific statute that deals with this “spousal sex battery,” as it is referred to it in the South Carolina Code. According to SC 16-3-615., “ it is required that there is a physical manifestation of force or violence needed to overcome the victim. This offense is exempted from rape shield statute. This means that South Carolina goes one step further, and adds an additional element, requiring that there be mens rea( the requisite mental state) to actually force your wife. The purpose of this statute is to prevent rambunctious husbands and wives from later claiming rape if they had been rough in the past.
For crimes against property- there is no family immunity-
Again, there is general principle of immunity that applies to criminal prosecutions for parents and spouses for crimes against property of family members. For example, if there were a case where an estranged husband broke into his estranged wife’s home that he no longer lived in, and burglarized it, he would and could be prosecuted by the state for such a crime, with no immunity protection whatsoever.
Domestic Relations in South Carolina can be tricky and complicated. If you have been charged with a domestic relation crime, contact the law offices of Reeves, Aiken, and Hightower, LLP. Mrs. Bea Hightower has been a child’s advocate for over 20 years, as well as a guardian ad litem. If there is domestic abuse in your South Carolina home, contact us toll-free at 77-374-5999 for more information.
A Chester mother is escaping charges against her for accidentally running over her 1-year-old daughter Wednesday afternoon.
According to the police reports, the 23-year-old mother was at home, working on her 1999 Dodge Durango at the time of incident. She reportedly had the hood up, and was attempting to drive the vehicle from one side of her house to the other.
She stated she was trying to maneuver the car to where a garden hose could reach the hood to clean out the grease and debris.
While driving, the mother left the hood up, blocking her line of sight, and continued to drive until she heard the neighbors screaming loading. It was at that point that she realized that she was backing over her 1-year-old daughter and immediately stopped her vehicle.
The little girl was rushed to Chester Hosptial, the closest hospital in the vicinity, where she suffered minor injuries. Specifically, he right arm was broken and there were some minor scrapes and burns to her stomach and chest.
From Chester Hospital, the girl was later flown via helicopter to Carolinas Medical Center for further treatment.
As of this point, the mother is not being charged with any crime due to the accidental nature of the incident, and the non-life threatening injuries the daughter suffered.
If you, or someone you know has suffered any serious car or personal injuries, contact the law offices of Reeves, Aiken, and Hightower, LLP toll-free at 877-374-5999 for more information.
A family wants the world to see the last words their son was about to send while he was texting a driving on that grim night that he crashed his vehicle and lost his life.
Apparently, the victim was a young and vibrant student on the University of Northern Colorado who loved to snowboard and hike, while still managing to maintain a high G.P.A.
He had a clean driving record- not even one speeding ticket to his name. He was killed in a single-car rollover accident earlier this month. Amongst the wreckage and the victim’s belongings, the police found the victim’s cell phone, in which it appears he was in the process of texting at the time of the tragedy.
The text message read as follows: “Sounds good my man, seeya soon, ill tw.” It is obvious that the victim was unable to finish he thought before the accident occurred.
Witnesses have provided a little more detail to the incident and report that the victim appeared to be drifting into oncoming traffic with his head int he downward position, when he suddenly looked up, jerked the steering wheel and over corrected. His car ended up leaving the roadway and doing a complete flip before ending up head down.
The victim’s mother has decided to be extremely proactive in educating others on the dangers of texting and driving. She wants her son’s death to not be in vain, but rather to hopefully save the lives of others who continue to text and drive.
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, there are more then 9 people that are killed every day in crashes by distracted drivers. Not to mention, there are around 1,060 people injured a day by distracted drivers.
There are 39 states that have taken the initiative to outlaw texting while driving. Whether you live in those states or not, please think about the distraction and choose to put the phone down. Studies reveal that traffic accident rates for people ages 16 to 22-years-old are the highest out of any other age group of drivers.
It’s clear that youths, through no fault of their own, are the least experienced on the road. That’s why it’s important that parents and mentors take the time to warn youths of the dangers of risky driving and the importance of practicing safe driving techniques. If your teen has been involved in a serious accident, you need an accomplished and trusted attorney on your side. Call the law officers of Reeves, Aiken, and Hightower, LLP at our SC office at 803-548-4444, our NC office at 704-499-9000 or toll-free at 877-374-5999.
A mother from Chester, South Carolina is being investigated after she backed her vehicle over her one-year-old daughter last Wednesday.
The Chester County Sheriff’s Office has released a statement concerning the incident that explains that the 23-year-old mother was attempting to work on her vehicle at the time of the accident.
She was apparently washing the vehicle’s engine out, and decided to move the SUV from one side of the house to the other while the hood was still in the upright position, making it nearly impossible to see her surroundings.
The mother states she was moving the car to get closer to the hose on the opposite side of the home, and did not realize that it would be so dangerous to drive a few feet with the hood up.
According to a Sheriff’s report, the officers were called to Chester Regional Wednesday afternoon to investigate and question the mother. She responded that she did strike her daughter accidentally when she was reversing her SUV.
The impact of the SUV caused the child to fall to the ground and somehow she ended up underneath the vehicle. The mother continued to reverse her car until she heard neighbors yelling at her to “STOP.”
The little girl was immediately rushed to the nearest hospital. Her injuries include a broken right arm along with scrapes and burn marks on her abdomen and chest.
Medical personnel determined the best course of action would be to airlift the little girl to Carolina Medical Center in Charlotte for further analysis and treatment.
The case is still under current investigation.
Studies reveal that every week in the United States approximately fifty children will be backed over by vehicles with at least two being injured fatally. Tragically, over 70 percent of these incidents involves a driver that is a parent or close relative. There is always a responsibility for drivers to be aware of what is behind their vehicle before backing up; However, when small children are present, that duty becomes more important than ever. If you or a loved one is hurt in an accident, Call Accident Attorneys of Reeves, Aiken, and Hightower,LLP at 803-548-4444 or 877-374-5999 toll-free.
Salisbury’s Fire Department have just released a statement in regards to the accident that claimed the life
of a toddler early Thursday morning.
Accordingly, the firefighters report that there had been some sort of electrical issue with the victim’s portable fan that subsequently sparked an electrical fire that resulted in the fatality.
The Fire Chief stated that the Fire Department received a call from a local neighbor a little before 1:00 a.m. Thursday morning, stating that the flames were growing rapidly and engulfing the back and sides of the home.
The victims lived in a small, one-story home in a quiet neighborhood on Davis Street, that was sadly destroyed by the once small fire.
The neighbor reports that she saw two adults and two children escape the fire unscathed. However, the sense of security was quickly ruffled when the two-year-old boy did not come out of the home with the parents.
An officer quickly entered the home, through the front door where smoke and flames were everywhere. He managed to find his way to the back of the home into the child’s bedroom, where he found the toddler in his bed sleeping.
When he went to pick the child up and carry him to safety, he realized that the child was unresponsive.
In the officer’s heroic attempt, there was nothing more he could do to rescue the young boy.
The boy’s teenage sister was injured when she had to break a window and climb out to safety. The father and the officer were also injured and both later treated for smoke inhalation.
All the can be stated for certain is that the fire began in the parent’s bedroom, where they were using the portable fan to cool themselves as they rested.
The investigation of the fire still remains underway.
As we all know and appreciate, small children are the most vulnerable among us, and great care must be taken to protect their safety. Accidents can happen quickly if proper steps are not taken by those in charge of their welfare. Despite our best intentions, however, needless accidents still happen, and injuries will occur. Hopefully, the injuries will be minor.
However, if your child is seriously injured, you need to know what to do first and what to expect. The experienced child injury attorneys of Reeves, Aiken & Hightower LLP are standing by to help. For more information on your options, call us at 877-374-5999 for a private consultation to evaluate your case.