The Bradley Law Firm Files Distracted Driving Wrongful Death Lawsuit

The Bradley Law Firm filed a six-count wrongful death lawsuit in the Circuit Court of Saline County, Missouri arising from the July 10, 2015 death of 16 year old Carl Girard, Jr.


Image from news media showing the recovery efforts to locate Carl Girard, Jr. The Bradley Law Firm filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the driver and passengers alleging the teens were car surfing at the time the driver lost control of the vehicle.

Girard was a passenger in a car owned by Terrence Erby and driven by Chastity Roll, both defendants in the suit. Shannon Threatt and Adam Joseph Hammer were passengers in the vehicle, and are also named as Defendants in the lawsuit.

While it is unusual to vehicle passengers named as Defendants in a personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit, such claims may be viable under Missouri law when passengers encourage reckless driving or provides substantial assistance in the reckless conduct.

Attorney E. Ryan Bradley stated “The police report indicates one or more of the passengers were hanging out of the sunroof when Roll lost control of the vehicle on a gravel road causing it to plunge into a creek.”

Bradley indicated he has handled numerous cases with distracted driving, but those were all the result of cell phone usage. “Usually, we see drivers distracted by mobile devices. Rarely do we see passengers doing something so reckless that it cases someone to crash a vehicle.”

Bradley indicated he wants kids to be reminded of the dangers- and potential liability- associated with distracted driving. “In holding both the driver and passengers responsible for this young man’s death, it is my deepest hope that others read this and reconsider how important it is to not interfere with a driver’s attention at the wheel.”

The Bradley Law Firm specializes in serious personal injury and wrongful death claims.

Read the actual wrongful death petition, Carl Girard v. Chastity J. Roll, here.