Police say a single-vehicle crash early Wednesday morning in Casa Grande ended with the death of four people believed to be undocumented immigrants. The crash happened around 1 a.m. near Florence Street and 3rd Avenue.
U.S. Border Patrol and Homeland Security reportedly notified Casa Grande police about two vehicles driving together that they thought to be a “load vehicle”. According to Casa Grande police spokesman Thomas Anderson, a police officer nearby saw a 2001 Dodge Durango enter Florence Street at a high rate of speed.
The vehicle tried to turn west onto 3rd Avenue when the driver lost control and crashed through a residential yard near a house, Anderson said. Homeland Security and Border Patrol were following the vehicle at the time, he said.
No one in the house was hurt. Authorities found a total of 11 people in the vehicle. Three of them were found deceased, Anderson said.
Two people were transported to Casa Grande Regional Medical Center. Three others were flown to Maricopa Medical Center. One of them has since died. Two more occupants were taken to Banner Good Samaritan Medical Center and the suspected driver was flown to St. Joseph’s Hospital.
The conditions of those who survived are unknown at this time. Homeland Security reportedly has the driver of the second vehicle in custody.
The driver of the Dodge Durango is a female from Eloy, but her name has not been released. Other than the two drivers, all of the occupants in the Dodge Durango are believed to be undocumented immigrants, Anderson said.
Homeland Security and U.S. Border Patrol have custody of all the people involved in the incident. Casa Grande police are investigating the crash.
QUESTION: Can an illegal immigrant who is injured in an auto accident make a claim against the responsible driver?
ANSWER: Yes. There is no prohibition against an illegal or “undocumented” immigrant making a claim for injuries and damages in a car accident, or any other injury-causing incident. In this regard, all people in Arizona have the same rights.
QUESTION: Is a jury likely to give money to an injured person who is in the US illegally?
ANSWER: The answer to this depends upon the people on the jury, but likely, the jury won’t even be told that the claimant is “illegal”. Under Arizona law, and as a Phoenix car accident lawyer, there is no relevance to this information. If they are hurt, they have the same rights as others. If someone causes them harm, they have the same legal responsibilities to pay for the harm, regardless of one’s legal or citizenship status.
DO YOU AGREE WITH THIS? PLEASE FEEL FREE TO SHARE YOUR THOUGHTS.