Police officials stated that the pedestrian that was struck and killed has been identified as Patricia Ellen Riedy age 60 of Wildwood, Mo. According to police Riedy was crossing Woodman Avenue and was not in a crosswalk when she was struck by a Ford Explorer SUV.
Police said the driver of the Ford Explorer was Martha Cruz age 36 and was alleged to be driving without a license, but was not arrested at the scene of the crash. Riedy was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash by paramedics, according to authorities.
According to police Los Angeles Police Department detectives from the Valley Traffic Division are investigating the fatal pedestrian crash. It appears there was no alcohol or drugs, as the driver was not taken into custody. In any event, there are two isues here for purposes of this post: (1) the criminal aspect; (2) the wrongful death aspect.
The Criminal Aspect
Here, the potential defendant will need a lawyer to explain why Ms. Cruz was not licensed, and whether or not that failure to comply with the CVC caused the wreck;
Will Ms. Cruz Need A Wrongful Death Attorney?
The chances are, Ms. Cruz won't have auto insurance and the fact she is so irresponsible in not having a license, she probably has no assets either. Wrongful death attorneys typically sue people who have something to lose. The problem attorneys face in trying to pursue these actions, are faced with defendants who shirk their duties under the law.
Some people cannot afford auto insurance, and are just struggling. Others, know they can get away with things by becoming "judgment proof". So here, the family and survivors would want a tort lawyer to sue and investigate assets. It could be that Ms. Cruz was in the "Course and Scope of Employment". It could be the vehicle itself was covered under an insurance policy, or that Ms. Cruz had auto insurance even though she was not licensed. She may be covered by her employer's liability insurance policy (assuming she had a job and was working at the time.)
So, yes, Ms. Cruz might need a defense lawyer for the criminal and civil aspects of her court issues. The victim's family will probably want to explore a recovery to pay for things like funeral expense, etc.