Case Highlights Difficulties of Texting-While-Driving Investigations
Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department crash investigators plan to obtain phone records from Bruce Jenner and the other drivers involved in a fatal accident. Mr. Jenner voluntarily submitted to a field sobriety test and provided blood samples to prove he was not intoxicated, and alcohol does not appear to be a contributing factor at this point in the investigation.
Multicar Crash Sent Vehicle into Oncoming Traffic
The fatal multicar crash occurred on Saturday around noon on the Pacific Coast Highway. The driver of a Toyota Prius suddenly braked at a traffic light. The driver of a white Lexus rammed into the back of the Prius. Then Mr. Jenner ran into her. The force of the impact sent the white Lexus into the path of an oncoming Hummer H2. The Lexus driver, 69 year-old Kim Howe, died at the scene.
Officers Explain Why Texting Cases Are Hard to Prove
Officers announced their likely plans to review phone and texting records of all drivers involved in the accident. With the proliferation of texting while driving, investigators’ proactive actions signal steps in the right direction of auto accident investigations.
However, Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department’s Sgt. Philip Brooks explains that proving a driver was distracted by texting at the exact moment of impact is difficult, yet crucial. He told a New York Times reporter: “The problem is pinpointing the time of the accident . . . If the accident occurred at 12:05 and 30 seconds, or 12:05 and 40 seconds, if you hung up before that, that’s useless information.” The sergeant noted that investigators will consider the driver’s overall texting and call logs to determine whether the driver sent and received texts during the period leading up to or including the collision.
Weight as a Factor in Severity of Accident
Investigators have also mentioned that vehicular weight may have contributed to the severity of the accident. Mr. Jenner was pulling a trailer with a dune buggy in his black Cadillac Escalade. The combined weight of the heavy SUV and its load may have forced the Lexus into oncoming traffic. The Lexus sedan was no match for a Hummer, one of the heaviest personal vehicles on the road, when they collided.
Paparazzi Photographed the Scene: Did They Also Cause the Crash?
Bruce Jenner rose to stardom in 1976 when he won the gold medal in the men’s decathlon in the Summer Olympics in Montreal. Since then he has made periodic appearances in movies and television programs, most recently in the reality TV show “Keeping Up With the Kardashians.” Over the past few months, his transition into a woman has attracted intense media attention, with celebrity reporters following his every move. Although photographers were tailing Mr. Jenner, police have ruled out paparazzi as the cause of the Malibu auto accident. The photographers were on the scene snapping photos of the horrific wreck that left one woman dead and five people injured, seemingly more interested in getting the story than in the lives so tragically affected by the crash.
Bill Berenson Investigates the Facts in Challenging Auto Crash Cases
Berenson Law Firm thoroughly investigates the factors surrounding challenging auto accident claims to help our clients recover the maximum possible damages. If you have been in a car or truck collision, you can count on us to advocate for your rights. Call us at 888-801-8585 toll-free or 817-885-8000 from the Dallas-Fort Worth area.