• August 15, 2022

John Bell Killed by Alleged DWI Driver on Avenue U in Galveston, TX

UPDATE (August 16, 2022): The scooter rider killed in this incident has been identified as John David Bell. The driver who hit him, 35-year-old Yordany Ferrer, is reportedly charged with intoxication manslaughter with a vehicle in connection to the accident.

Galveston, TX — August 14, 2022, a 53-year-old man on a scooter died in a collision with a car at a Galveston intersection.

According to reports the incident happened Sunday at an intersection on Avenue U, close to 53rd Street and Seawall Boulevard. Preliminary investigation suggests the victim was riding a scooter west on the roadway and stopped at a posted stop sign. When he proceeded forward through the intersection he was hit by a Nissan Altima whose driver disregarded the stop sign.

The victim was ejected from his scooter and landed on a nearby pickup truck that was stopped at the intersection. He was transported to an area hospital for treatment of critical injuries but died a short time later.

The Nissan driver was taken into custody on suspicion of DWI.

The investigation continues. No further information is currently available.

Commentary on John Bell Scooter Accident in Galveston

Reports suggest the driver who ran the stop sign and hit the victim may have been impaired when they did so. I wish that came as a shock to me, but unfortunately many coastal Texas tourist areas (Galveston being a primary spot for a weekend beach getaway) have disproportionate numbers of DWI crashes. Just last week, in fact, two grandparents and their young grandchildren were hit by an alleged drunk driver as they rode a golf cart through a Galveston intersection.

It's a shame each and every time something like this happens, no matter the location or the circumstances. People may think the only response to such a wreck is to ensure the DWI driver is charged appropriately, but if evidence confirms they were too drunk to drive then there may be another party to investigate: Whoever provided the drinks.

John Bell Killed by Alleged DWI Driver on Avenue U in Galveston, TX

Under Texas dram shop law, licensed alcohol providers who over-serve an obviously intoxicated person may be liable for injuries they cause while under the influence. A dram shop claim against a law-breaking business lets DWI accident victims seek much-needed help and makes sure that business faces consequences for recklessly endangering its customers and the public.

I'm not saying I know of a Galveston business that should be held accountable for illegally over-serving the suspect. I just think it's one possible factor of many that should be carefully investigated to be sure the whole story is known and the victim's loved ones get the help they need and deserve. Will police be sure that's done?

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