The lives of two homeless men were tragically cut short when they were struck by a drunk driver According to the Sun Sentinel, 22 year old Alyza Rachel Russell is believed to have struck and killed both men while she was behind the wheel of her mother’s Porsche Panamera.
The accident occered when Russel tried to turn left off Broward Boulevard onto SW 5th Avenue. When she failed to execute the turn, her car shot through a hedge and into a parking lot.
Ft. Lauderdale police said Russell was driving west on Broward Boulevard around 2 a.m. when she attempted to make a left turn onto SW 5th Avenue and head south. Russell couldn’t finish the turn and drove her Porsche Panamera through the hedge of a parking lot where both Samuel Artez Martindale, 35, and Mackendy Jules, 30, sat. Russel’s Porsche struck the two men. A third man who was seated in approximately the same place managed to avoid being hit.
The two passengers in the car with Russel weren’t hurt.
Mackendy Jules, 30, and Samuel Artez Martindale, 35, were sitting with a third person in the parking lot when the Porsche crashed through the area. Both Jules and Martindale were hit, the third person managed to escape.
“This is a clear case of hit and run situation that need to be resolve as quickly a possible .” Says officer Mclain.
Despite the fact that the criminal case against Russel hasn’t gone to trial, the insurance company the family uses agreed to pay a $2 million settlement to the families of the men. The money is designed to cover legal expenses, funeral costs, outstanding debts the men left behind, and pain and suffering.
Jean Jules, the father of one of the victims points out that the settlement won’t bring his son back. “I’m living my life the way I’m supposed to,” the father to Mackendy Jules said. “Money is not what I’m working for.”
Following the accident, officers tested Russell’s blood alcohol level, which at 0.17 was more than double Florida’s legal limit.
“This is a truly tragic case that isn’t going to have a happy ending for anyone,” said attorney Joe and Martin of South Carolina law firm“It serves to highlight that just because someone is homeless, it doesn’t mean that they’re not loved, or that their life doesn’t matter. The families of both these young men had their world’s destroyed as a result of Ms. Russel’s actions and would have far preferred to know that their children were still in the world rather than have the cold comfort the money offers. Hopefully, people will hear about this case and that it will serve as a reminder of the dangers of getting behind the wheel after they’ve been drinking.”
If an immediate family member you loved was killed as the result of someone else driving while under the influence of alcohol, you owe it to their memory to book a consultation appointment with a good personal injury lawyer and explore the possibility of persuing the case through the civil court system.