Successfully Helping Injured People in Montana for More Than 40 Years

Snapchat video provides evidence of speeding and negligence

On Behalf of | Mar 20, 2024 | Car Accidents |

In many motor vehicle collisions, the eye-witness accounts do not provide conclusive evidence of the cause of the accident. In a recent wrong-way collision near Three Forks, an i-Phone recording both was a partial cause of the collision and also a witness to one of the causative events.

The accident

According to a police affidavit filed to obtain additional evidence, Montana Highway Patrol deputies recounted several incidents of a wrong-way driver on I-90. The first report came from a commercial truck driver who spotted the driver westbound near Belgrade.

The driver continued in the wrong lane and was spotted by five more motorists, including a Gallatin County Deputy Sheriff. Two of the drivers reported swerving to avoid the wrong-way driver, and one woman stated that the wrong-way vehicle clipped her outside driver’s side mirror.

By 1:33 a.m., the Gallatin County 911 Call Center had recorded a total of six calls reporting a wrong-way driver. The witnesses gave consistent descriptions of the wrong-way vehicle: a light-colored or white SUV traveling west in the eastbound lane at a high rate of speed.

One of the Gallatin deputies pulled over with its lights flashing and siren sound. The wrong-way vehicle did not respond and continued to speed west in the wrong lane. The deputy used a cross-over and began to pursue the speeding SUV. After a few minutes, the deputy saw the SUV crash head-on into an east-bound Buick Enclave.

The driver of the Enclave, a 22-year-old woman, was declared dead at the scene. The driver of the wrong-way vehicle was hospitalized for treatment of his injuries.

Police records also state that a blood-alcohol test taken on the driver of the wrong-way vehicle about 70 minutes after the accident showed his BAC to be .198%, well over the state limit of 0.08%.

An informative detail

One of the most tantalizing pieces of debris found in the wreckage was a cell phone belonging to the driver of the wrong-way vehicle. The device contained a 2-minute Snapchat video in which the driver filmed himself traveling at 108 mph.

Claims for personal injury and wrongful death

The wrong-way vehicle was charged with several crimes, including vehicular homicide while under the influence of alcohol, fleeing and eluding a law enforcement officer, and six counts of criminal endangerment. These charges are sufficient to form the basis for a lawsuit for damages against the wrong-way driver.

The woman who died at the scene was the mother of a young child and she had just learned that she was pregnant with her second. Her family has powerful claims for wrongful death against the wrong-way driver.



RSS Feed