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Wrongful death suit possible in senior's death in Brampton

A wedding reception in Brampton turned disastrous on the night of July 17 when a 71-year-old woman tragically lost her life in a car crash, according to local sources. Under Ontario law, the teenager believed to be responsible for the accident cannot be named publicly. However, criminal charges may yet be forthcoming, as well as a possible wrongful death suit on behalf of the deceased woman. 

According to the accident report, the woman was leaving the wedding hall just before 11:00 p.m., crossing the street with another relative to retrieve their vehicles when the accident occurred. A southbound vehicle reportedly struck her while she was on her way across the street. She was pronounced dead at the scene by arriving medical personnel. 

The vehicle involved in the crash reportedly left the scene but was followed by other relatives to a nearby intersection, where police caught the driver. The 17-year-old boy who was behind the wheel has been charged with failure to remain at a fatal accident scene, and he has since been released from custody. He is expected to appear in court at a later date to face the charges against him. 

Even if the charges against the young man are reduced or dropped, Ontario law still allows the family some measure of legal recourse. A wrongful death lawsuit, which is considered the province of civil law, could be filed against the young man and anyone with ownership interest in the vehicle involved in the crash. While such a suit does not require a criminal conviction to be filed, the support of police evidence pertaining to the case can be helpful in a civil court setting. 

Source: Toronto Sun, "Senior leaving wedding killed in hit-run", Chris Doucette, July 18, 2016

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