Eight people were injured in a recent pedestrian accident in California. Police have since arrested and charged the driver with eight counts for attempted murder because they believe the collision was intentional. These types of motor vehicle accidents can be especially difficult for victims to recover from emotionally, not to mention the physical and financial damages most have to deal with as well.
According to police, the 34-year-old driver had just picked up food and was taking it to his Bible study group when he spotted a group of people on a nearby sidewalk. The driver is a veteran who apparently suffers from mental health issues. In what may have been an episode related to that mental illness, he suspected the pedestrians of being members of specific religious group and plowed into them.
The victims range between the ages of 9 and 52. While no one was killed, all of them suffered injuries that required some type of treatment. A 13-year-old girl suffered the most severe injuries of the group and is still in the hospital and listed in critical condition. The driver did not appear to be injured, and witnesses told police that he was expressing thanks to God in the period of time immediately following the wreck.
California police are still investigating the accident exploring the possibility of filing hate crime charges in addition to the eight counts of attempted murder. However, victims of these types of motor vehicle accidents do not have to wait until police have finished their investigation to pursue compensation. Personal injury claims can even be filed in the absence of any criminal charges whatsoever, which can be helpful for victims who were injured by a driver who was negligent -- whether or not any related criminal charges result in a conviction.