• June 14, 2022

Michael Rayner Injured in Car Accident on East 52nd in Odessa, TX

UPDATE (June 23, 2022): Reports identified the man injured in the crash as Michael Lynn Rayner. Additional details about the accident remain unconfirmed at this time.

Odessa, TX -- June 7, 2022, one person was injured due to an accident where an allegedly intoxicated teenager hit a motorcycle on East 52nd.

Investigators reported that the crash took place in the 5000 block of East 52nd Street, just off Loop 338. Police say that a 67-year-old man was on a motorcycle traveling along East 52nd. Ahead, a vehicle pulled out of an apartment lot, causing a collision. That driver then allegedly fled the scene.

The motorcyclist was taken to a hospital with reportedly serious injuries. Reports say police lcoated and identified the other driver as 18-year-old Victor Mendoza III. They allege that Mendoza had been drinking with friends prior to the accident, and authorities report a charge of Accident Involving Serious Bodily Injury.

Commentary on Michael Rayner Motorcycle Accident in Odessa

It's not my place to speculate on whether or not the allegations surrounding this incident are true. But any claim that a teenager had been drinking raises some serious concerns due to the fact that others could be involved in the accident who need to be held accountable.

Michael Rayner Injured in Motorcycle Accident in Odessa, TX

While it's certainly possible for someone to drink with friends at a residence or to get alcohol from some individual they know, it's also possible for local alcohol providers like bars, liquor stores, and restaurants to illegally serve minors. Some servers simply aren't trained well enough to spot fake IDs, some don't bother checking, and some simply know they're serving minors and don't care. In fact, there have been many accidents over the years involving teenagers who were illegally over-served by a local establishment only to get themselves or someone else seriously hurt or killed.

If something like that happens, those businesses can be held responsible. Not only might there be potential criminal and administrative consequences, but they can also be held liable under dram shop law for their role in the victim's injuries. Is that something that authorities have looked into here, or will getting the full story require more thorough independent investigations?

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