ATLANTA - The family of a Loganville woman killed by a drunk driver five years ago has been awarded a $5.8 million settlement - roughly twice the norm in a wrongful death trial, an attorney said.
A Fulton County State Court jury returned the judgment for the family of Stacey Camacho after a recent three-day trial, said their attorney, Nelson Tyrone.
Camacho was killed in July 2004 when Alpharetta resident Seung C. Park, 55, ran a red light and slammed into her Toyota Camry on Peachtree Industrial Boulevard in Suwanee. Her son, then 2, was in the backseat but escaped serious injury.
At the time of the crash, Park's blood-alcohol level was nearly twice the legal limit, Tyrone said. Camacho died two days later from her injuries.
Park pleaded guilty to vehicular homicide in Gwinnett Superior Court in July last year. He was sentenced to seven years in prison and five on probation.
In the recent civil hearing, Camacho's family expressed compassion for Park after hearing his wife's testimony, Tyrone said. They had previously sought significant punitive damages, he said.
Camacho's husband and her mother are expected to receive the $5.8 million, none of which is considered punitive damages, Tyrone said.
"We anticipate there will be litigation against (Park's) insurance company for the entire amount," Tyrone said.
As for Park, Tyrone said he is eligible for parole but has not been given a release date.
"It's likely he'll be released ... before his prison sentence is complete," Tyrone said.