• May 06, 2022

Walter Mendoza Injured in Single-Vehicle Crash off South Padre Island Drive in Corpus Christi, TX

UPDATE (May 12, 2022): Additional sources identified the man injured in the accident as 25-year-old Walter Mendoza.

Corpus Christi, TX -- April 22, 2022, a 25-year-old man was seriously injured in a single-vehicle accident off South Padre Island Drive in Corpus Christi.

Reports say the incident happened around 2:30 a.m. on the SPID access road near Blanche Moore Drive. Preliminary investigation suggests 22-year-old Fernando Robles was driving a Ford F-150 pickup truck east on the access road when he lost control. The pickup jumped the concrete median and hit a barrier, then crashed into a concrete pillar holding up a highway sign.

The crash caused serious injuries to the pickup's passenger. Robles received possible injuries and was reportedly arrested on preliminary intoxication assault charges.

No further information is currently available.

Commentary on Walter Mendoza Accident off SPID in Corpus Christi

The suspect in this crash reportedly faces a very serious charge, but his alleged crime and the related consequences are a matter for the courts and the suspect will have his day in one to answer for what happened. I don't write this blog to wag a finger at suspected drunk drivers from the sidelines.

Instead, it's more important to talk about what can be done for those harmed by the crash like the injured passenger, who reports say may have been paralyzed by injuries sustained in the accident. If intoxication played a role in that terrible damage, the victim should be aware that the man at the wheel may not be the only one to hold accountable due to Texas dram shop law.

Walter Mendoza Single-Vehicle Accident Corpus Christi, TX

Essentially dram shop law says that a licensed alcohol provider who over-serves an obviously intoxicated person may be liable for damages resulting from that intoxication. That means bars, restaurants, liquor stores, and other businesses can be held legally responsible when they keep pouring drinks for customers who then get in accidents like this one. Dram shop law help victims and families get back on their feet and also punishes negligent bars for putting communities in danger.

Some folks argue that a business shouldn't be held accountable for giving customers what they want, but it's hard to dispute how dangerous it is for bars to serve drinks nonstop without considering the risks that poses. In the course of my career I've seen the devastating effects of that reckless and illegal behavior far too many times, and I can't be alone in wanting it shut down for good.

Despite how serious dram violations are, though, police rarely look into them. Their job is to investigate and find committed crimes--an important step, but not one that directly helps the victims of those crimes. That's why it's often necessary to have independent investigators look into these accidents rather than waiting for police reports. For the sake of the victim and his loved ones, the sooner someone looks more closely at this crash the sooner there can be some real answers. Any further steps would largely depend on what those answers turn out to be.


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