Mar 29, 2013 - By Christina George, Staff WriterThe parents of a Riverton teen who was killed two years ago in a crash on North Federal Boulevard have filed a wrongful death suit against the grandparents of deceased man who caused the fatal collision.
On Feb. 23, 2011, Sereah Lynn Carr, 18, was one of four passengers in a 2006 Hyundai Tucson that was struck by a 1998 red Pontiac Firebird driven by Anthony Robert Herrera. The other three were injured, two critically.
Herrera, 23, of Riverton, was driving south on Federal Boulevard at speeds up to 120 miles per hour when he lost control of his vehicle and smashed into the Tucson. Post-crash blood testing revealed Herrera had a blood alcohol level of .09 percent.
Parents Aaron and Michelle Carr filed their complaint March 8 in Lander's 9th Judicial District Court, naming Herrera's grandparents, Fred and Kitty Maupin, as the defendants in the wrongful death suit. The Maupins reportedly owned the Firebird Herrera was driving when he struck and killed Sereah Carr.
"Despite the fact that they knew or should have known of Anthony Herrera's dangerous and reckless driving habits, Fred and Kitty Maupin gave Anthony Herrera permission to drive their Firebird," the complaint stated.
The document, which was filed through the Carr's attorneys Robert A. Krause and Elizabeth A. Richards of the Jackson-based Spence Law Firm, requests a six-person jury trial be held in the matter.
According to the complaint, the Carrs believe Herrera breached the duty of care by driving at a reckless and dangerous rate of speed, driving under the influence of alcohol, failing to comply with maximum speed limits, failing to maintain control of the Firebird, failing to exercise reasonable care in operating the vehicle, and failure to exercise reasonable care under all of the circumstances.
According to the complaint, Fred and Kitty Maupin breached the duty of care through entrusting the Firebird to Herrera negligently.
"Fred and Kitty Maupin knew or should have known that Anthony Herrera was a reckless and dangerous driver," the complaint read.
The Carrs believe Herrera's actions and his grandparents' negligent entrustment of the Firebird to Herrera were the direct and proximate cause of their daughter's death.
In their complaint, the Carrs list damages suffered because of their daughter's death including expenses for the death and burial of the deceased. Also noted are other pecuniary losses; loss of services; loss of care, comfort, protection, companionship, society, advice and friendship; and costs of the court action. Amounts for such damages are to be proven at trial, should a court proceeding be granted.
According to police reports, Herrera had lost control of the Firebird immediately before the fatal crash at about 1:35 p.m. Feb. 23. Herrera had been traveling in Federal's left southbound lane when he came upon a slower-moving vehicle in front of him. Herrera swerved to the left, entering the turn lane, and crossing into oncoming traffic.
Police reported that Herrera attempted to swerve back to the right, at which time the Firebird started to skid. The Pontiac went airborne, hopping over a culvert to the right of the road.
The Tucson was sitting nearby at the entrance to Taco Bell. According to reports, Herrera's vehicle landed and immediately struck the Tucson. Officials estimate the Firebird was traveling at 65 to 70 mph when it hit the other vehicle.
The impact sent the Tucson into the air as well, catapulting the vehicle into the southbound lanes of Federal Boulevard. Herrera's car fell into the ditch in front of Taco Bell.
His female passenger was injured in the crash and was transported to Lander Regional Hospital for treatment.
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