Huntington Beach, CA (June 1, 2013) – Kelly Morehouse, a passenger on a Harley Davidson motorcycle, was killed on Saturday night when the motorcycle on which she was traveling was struck by a drunk driver. Kelly Morehouse, 25, of Huntington Beach, was a passenger on a motorcycle. She died about three hours after the collision at UCI Medical Center in Orange.
The crash happened at the intersection of Goldenwest Street and Rio Vista Drive at 8:35 p.m., near Huntington Beach Central Park and the popular Park Bench cafe. Morehouse was on the back of a black 2012 Harley Davidson motorcycle when she was struck by a Lexus driven by Tadashi Mizutani, also of Huntington Beach.
An executive of a residential care corporation, Tobelas Corporation, Mr. Mizutani was arrested and booked in Huntington Beach where he posted $100,000 bail. The judge at his first appearance will decide whether or not Mr. Mizutani is a flight risk or a danger to the community. If the judge decides he is, then he may decide to increase the bail on Mr. Mizutani, order electronic monitoring, or require him to surrender his passport. He will likely be charged with felony drinking and driving, and if found guilty by the court, will face significant jail time, fines, restitution and lose his privilege to drive for one year or longer.
The motorcycle driver, who is 24 years old, is in stable condition, according to Huntington Beach police.
Lawyer Sherif Edmond El Dabe states “Drunk driving is extremely dangerous. All motorists know this and they know when they get behind the wheel of a car after drinking, they are putting others in danger. Not only is Mr. Mizutani’s entire insurance policy available for the loss of Kelly Morehouse, but his personal assets are at stake too. He is liable under legal theories that provide for punitive damages to her her family.”
Under California law, her heirs have a claim for wrongful death. These claimants may include her children, if any, siblings and parents. They are entitled to wrongful death damages, which include economic and non-economic losses.