Case details

Parents claimed drunken driver killed daughter





Result type

Not present

death, leg, loss of society, multiple traumamputation
On Oct. 24, 2009, plaintiffs’ decedent Bailey Sloan, 20, a college student, was driving north on Interstate 215 in Grand Terrace when her Mercedes Benz ran out of gas and pulled over onto the right shoulder, just north of Washington Avenue. While Sloan was getting back inside her stopped car, a vehicle operated by Cynthia Redmond swerved across the freeway and crashed into the Mercedes Benz. As a result, Sloan’s leg was traumatically amputated and she was thrown several hundred feet down the freeway, where she died. Sloan’s front seat passenger was also injured, having suffered a brain injury, but settled Redmond’s $25,000 policy limits. Following the accident, Redmond was arrested and determined to have a blood-alcohol content of 0.13, exceeding the 0.08 limit, which is the alcohol level that a person is considered to be legally impaired under California law. Sloan’s parents, Michael Sloan and Rebecca McGuire, sued Cynthia Redmond and the owner of her vehicle, James Redmond. The decedent’s parents alleged that Ms. Redmond was negligent in the operation of her vehicle. They also alleged that Mr. Redmond was negligent for entrusting the vehicle to Ms. Redmond and was vicariously liable for Ms. Redmond’s actions. However, Mr. Redmond was ultimately let out of the case on summary judgment. Ms. Redmond was incarcerated shortly after the accident and could not afford to post bond on the bail set at $300,000. She was ultimately convicted on two driving under the influence of alcohol charges and pleaded guilty to the vehicular manslaughter charge, all felonies. As a result, Ms. Redmond was sentenced to six years in prison. She will be in prison for another two years. As a result of Ms. Redmond’s plea, liability was never an issue at the civil trial. Thus, the only issue at trial was regarding the damages sustained by Sloan’s parents as a result of their daughter’s death. However, Ms. Redmond has no assets and is judgment proof., Bailey Sloan’s leg was traumatically amputated in the accident, and she sustained other traumatic when she was struck and thrown several hundred feet down the freeway. She ultimately died at the scene. The decedent was 20. She was survived by her parents and a sister. The decedent’s parents testified to all aspects in which damages are recoverable for the death of their daughter, including the loss of love, companionship, comfort, care, assistance, protection, affection, society and moral support. Thus, plaintiffs’ counsel asked the jury to award the decedent’s parents $50 million in total damages. Defense counsel noted that Ms. Redmond’s insurance company immediately offered Ms. Redmond’s $25,000 insurance policy limits, but it was rejected. Counsel also noted that Ms. Redmond proposed a payment plan, in which she would pay $50 per month for a period of time after she was released from prison, but there was never a response to the offer.
Superior Court of San Bernardino County, San Bernardino, CA

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