Tragically, actress Anne Heche died following a single-car accident that occurred on August 5, 2022. The coroner ruled that her death was an accident caused by thermal injuries and inhalation on August 11, 2022. She died after being transported from the accident scene to the hospital. Here, our Little Rock car accident attorney analyzes the reported causes of the car accident and potential claims that could arise from an accident of that type.
Anne Heche Involved in Two Separate Crashes
TMZ was one of several outlets to report that Anne Heche had been involved in a hit-and-run accident earlier the day of her fatal car crash. The first crash occurred when Heche’s vehicle ran into a garage door at an apartment complex. Then, she apparently sped away from the accident scene.
Allegedly, a neighbor’s security camera captured Heche’s vehicle speeding on a residential street at speeds up to 90 mph before she crashed into a residential home. A resident was inside the home at the time of the crash but was not struck by the vehicle. The crash started a fire that engulfed Heche’s vehicle and destroyed the home.
The exact cause of either crash is unknown. Heche may have been drinking alcohol earlier in the day, according to her social media posts. However, blood tests did not show any alcohol in her system. Tests allegedly revealed fentanyl and cocaine in her system.
Had she lived, Heche may have faced one or more criminal charges, such as DUI (alcohol and/or drugs), speeding, reckless driving, and leaving the scene of an accident. She might have also faced one or more civil lawsuits for personal injuries and property damage caused by collisions.
Potential Claims Accident Victims Could File After the Crashes
When a driver negligently causes a car accident, victims of the accident can pursue personal injury claims for damages. They can also pursue claims for property damage. In Anne Heche’s case, because she passed away, the accident victims could pursue claims against her estate to receive compensation.
For example, the apartment owner could sue for damages caused when Heche’s car ran into the garage door. Likewise, the homeowner could sue for property damages caused by the accident when Heche crashed into the home. A tenant renting the home could sue for property that was damaged and lost in the collision and fire.
In addition to property damages, anyone who sustained personal injuries could file a personal injury claim against Heche’s estate. Damages in a personal injury claim include reimbursement for economic damages (medical bills, for example) and compensation for non-economic damages (pain and suffering, for example).
If the victims had homeowner’s insurance or renter’s insurance coverage, they could file claims with their insurance providers. The insurance providers might then file claims against the Heche estate for the amounts they paid to the insured parties.
Because Heche was allegedly breaking the law when the accidents occurred, the injured parties could bring claims for negligence and negligence per se under California law. In a negligence per se claim, the person who caused the accident while violating the law is presumed to be negligent.
Contact Our Little Rock Car Accident Attorney for a Free Consultation
Car accidents often cause horrific injuries and substantial financial damages. You could be entitled to substantial compensation as an accident victim. Contact our law office to discuss your legal options with an experienced Little Rock car accident attorney.