Florida DUI Case Results in $50 Million Verdict
Michael Yow of Florida pled guilty to DUI involving serious bodily injury and was sentenced to a five-year prison term followed by ten years probation stemming from an accident occurring on September 3, 2004. Following his plea in the criminal courts, a personal injury case ensued whereby the Lakeland family he crashed into was awarded approximately $50 million in damages resulting from Yow’s negligent act of operating a vehicle while impaired by alcohol.
Mario Ladler II, the named victim in the DUI case was four years old at the time of the accident caused by Michael Yow. His frontal lobes were damaged in the accident when pieces of his skull were pushed into his brain. According to doctor’s testimony he is now living at the Florida Institute for Neurologic Rehabilitation in Wauchula, FL. It is Michael Yow’s plea of guilty in the State court that was the primary force in obtaining the award of $50 million against him without having to otherwise prove that he was at fault for causing the accident.
Often, criminal defense defendants do not consider the civil ramifications to entering into a plea in the State court. In the matter of DUI where a minimum mandatory requires adjudication, such pleas for leniency will almost always result in the commencing and success of a civil action against the defendant.