Devin LeDoux, Derek Laningham Injured in Car Accident in Jefferson County, TX
Jefferson County, TX -- February 27, 2022, Devin LeDoux and Derek Laningham were injured after an accident where their vehicles collided head-on.
Investigators reported that the crash took place at around 11:00 p.m. along Highway 73.
Authorities said that 25-year-old Devin LeDoux was in a Toyota Camry traveling westbound on the highway. Reports claim that 24-year-old Derek Laningham was driving a Dodge Avenger the wrong direction on westbound lanes. As a result, the two vehicles collided head-on.
Reports say that both LeDoux and Laningham had incapacitating injuries. Right now police say alcohol could be a factor, but this cannot be confirmed at this time.
Commentary on Devin LeDoux, Derek Laningham Car Accident in Jefferson County
UPDATE (April 13, 2022): Later reports indicate the injured driver in this accident had a blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) of .153 at the time of the crash. I don't say that with any judgment or to cause extra grief as he recovers from his injuries, but knowing that a significant level of intoxication was a factor may change how the accident should be addressed going forward.
As I mentioned previously, alcohol-related crashes sometimes involve holding the businesses that over-serve it responsible for the damage their intoxicated patrons cause or suffer. Under dram shop law such a business may have a legal duty to make what amends it can to the victim's loved ones after the serious crash on Highway 73.
Unfortunately, bad bars and dram violations often receive little attention from police. That's why if something like that is suspected (and it should be more often than it is) it's usually best for victims and their families to seek help from independent investigators who know what evidence to look for and how to get it.
ORIGINAL: It's obviously serious anytime authorities bring up alcohol, though it's important to take preliminary reports like these with a grain of salt. There could be extenuating circumstances to consider, so jumping to conclusions won't do any good. With that said, it's not surprising to see alcohol brought up considering the crash apparently involves a driver on the wrong side of the road. Quite frankly, investigations almost always show that a driver going the wrong way was impaired somehow. Alcohol is a very common factor in those situations, so understanding what that can mean for the victims and families is important.
One thing to consider, for example, is where the alcohol came from if alcohol indeed caused the wreck. This is due to dram shop law says that an alcohol provider who over-serves an obviously intoxicated person can be liable for damages resulting from that intoxication. What is obvious intoxication? Well, if someone has a couple of beers, chances are they'd be able to see that they're going into oncoming traffic. Someone so unaware of their surroundings that they ignore signs and headlights getting onto a limited access highway is usually highly intoxicated, which generally means they had far too much to drink.
Again, just to be clear, that may not be what happened here. This could easily involve unusual factors like a medical emergency or just a series of unfortunate mistakes. But if alcohol was a factor, reports say there were two people that were seriously hurt here. Would it really be just for them to bear all the burdens while a business that benefited off of all the chaos gets off scot-free? Of course not. That's why it's important to make sure investigators are being thorough here, and that includes finding out if dram shop comes into play.