Suspected Drunk Driver Who Caused Fatality Accident Ordered to Stand Trial

Last Updated on: 7th February 2019, 12:56 pm

SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA – On January 21, 2009, witnesses testified in El Cajon Superior Court before Judge Lantz Lewis to the drunkenness of a man charged with running down and killing a bicyclist in Alpine during last year’s holiday season. California Highway Patrol Officer Michael Edwards testified that Travis Chris Weber told him that “he had been drinking for about a week . . .” and didn’t remember anything that happened with regards to the tragic accident that occurred on December 2, 2008.

When officers arrested Weber at a bar two days after the accident that took Edward Costa’s life, Weber had a blood-alcohol level of 0.19, well above the legal limit of 0.08. Weber told arresting officers that he drank two half-pints of vodka before driving to Campo from El Cajon on December 2, 2008, but didn’t remember how he got to Campo or what he did along the way. When police searched Weber’s truck after his arrest on December 4, 2008, officers found empty beer cans and three empty half-pint vodka bottles. Prior to the December 2, 2008 incident, Weber was convicted of drunk driving at least once in New York and twice in San Diego County.

Because of this and other convincing testimony, Judge Lewis believed that Weber showed “indifference toward the safety of others” and ruled that Weber must stand trial in Costa’s death. Weber was ordered to be held in jail on $1 million bail pending a February 4th hearing to set a trial date.

On December 2, 2008 just before 5:00 p.m., Weber hit Costa while he was riding his mountain bike in the bicycle lane on Alpine Boulevard at Rock Terrace Road. Witnesses reported seeing Costa “fly up in the air” after Weber’s truck veered into the bicycle lane and slammed into Costa .

The sudden death of a loved one caused by the reckless acts of another causes unimaginable grief which the victim’s family and friends will carry with them for the rest of their lives. Apart from the insurmountable emotional hardship that family members will be left with, surviving family members may also be left with financial hardships. A wrongful death action can be brought by the victim’s surviving heirs against the wrong-doer to recover funeral and medical expenses, any lost wages, loss of future earnings of the deceased loved one, and loss of companionship and services. While no amount of money can compensate a family for their loss, obtaining monetary compensation will ease the financial stress and anxiety caused by the loss of a loved one.

At Berman & Riedel, LLP, our attorneys have years of experience in handling wrongful death cases, and understand not only the intricate legal aspects of handling such cases but also the emotionally sensitive aspects affecting our clients. We work diligently to see these cases through to completion so as to relieve as much stress as possible during this trying time in our clients’ lives. Contact a wrongful death attorney at Berman & Riedel, LLP, to discuss your legal options.

This feature was written by Harlan J. Zaback. Mr. Zaback is a Law Clerk/Clinical Student Intern with the firm Berman & Riedel, LLP, a personal injury litigation firm that focuses its practice in handling wrongful death cases throughout the State of California, including matters arising from fatal automobile accidents. Mr. Zaback is currently in his final year at California Western School of Law and is expected to graduate and receive his J.D. in May of 2009.

About Berman & Riedel, LLP firm managing partner attorney William M. Berman:

Attorney William M. Berman focuses his practice in the areas of catastrophic personal injury, wrongful death and elder abuse and neglect. Strictly a plaintiffs’ dedicated firm, he never represents insurance companies in the defense of claims. Mr. Berman’s firm remains staunchly committed to helping those who have suffered serious injury or loss due the negligence, intentional misconduct or wrongful acts of others.

Mr. Berman has grown his firm to what is considered one of the largest and most successful elder abuse/neglect practices within California. Through his continued successes in handling claims involving nursing home and elder abuse and neglect, Mr. Berman remains a prominent figure in advocating on behalf of this vulnerable class of citizens.

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Attorney Bill Berman

William M. Berman, Esquire
Berman & Riedel, LLP
12264 El Camino Real, Suite 300
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