Ex-North Carolina Lawmaker Sues Estate of Man in Fatal Crash

July 25, 2013

A former North Carolina legislator who was seriously injured in a 2011 car crash is suing the estate of the man killed in the accident as well as the bar which he says served the victim too much alcohol.

The Winston-Salem Journal reports former State Rep. Larry Womble filed a lawsuit Tuesday alleging that David Allen Carmichael drank too much and was driving recklessly, leading to the crash that killed him.

Womble also sued 6th & Vine, a bar and restaurant which he says served Carmichael too much alcohol, even after it was evident that Carmichael was intoxicated.

The lawsuit seeks more than $10,000 in compensatory and punitive damages.

R. Kenneth Babb, the administrator of Carmichael’s estate, wasn’t immediately available for comment Tuesday. Kathleen Barnes, the owner of 6th & Vine, couldn’t immediately be reached for comment.

Womble was initially charged with misdemeanor death by motor vehicle after the December 2011 crash. Winston-Salem police said Womble’s car crossed the centerline of Reynolds Park Road and crashed into Carmichael’s car.

Last November, the N.C. Attorney General’s Office dismissed the charge. Additional evidence showed that Carmichael’s car crossed the centerline and collided with Womble’s car. Carmichael’s blood-alcohol level was 0.29, more than three times the legal limit.

This is the second time that 6th & Vine has been sued in connection with a fatal crash involving alcohol.

In 2008, the bar and restaurant in downtown Winston-Salem reached a settlement with the family of Casey Bokhoven, the man hit and killed in 2007 by former television news anchor Tolly Carr, who had been driving drunk.

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