Paterson, NJ – Police Officer Struck, Injured by DUI Driver on Rt 21

Paterson, NJ – Police Officer Struck, Injured by DUI Driver on Rt 21

Paterson, NJ (June 09, 2022) – A drunk driver hit a police officer after he was pulled over for driving on the shoulder, and then led police on a chase on Wednesday, June 8th. 

According to sources, at about 7:00 a.m., 21-year-old Luis Villalba, a resident of Paterson, was driving his BMW on the shoulder of the northbound lanes of Route 21 in the area of the exit ramp for Route 46 in order to circumvent traffic.

A Clifton Police Officer attempted to pull Villalba over, but, as he walked toward the vehicle, Villalba sped off, striking and injuring the officer who is currently hospitalized in unknown condition.

Another officer pursued Villalba onto Route 46 during which time he collided with the center divider before spinning out into the shoulder and coming to an uncontrolled stop. 

Police arrested Villalba and his passenger at gunpoint. The passenger was later released without charges. Villalba, however, was charged with drinking alcohol while driving, eluding arrest, and aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.

Our thoughts are with the injured victim and their family at this time. We hope for their full recovery.

Suing a Drunk Driver For Damages in New Jersey

Paterson, NJ - Police Officer Struck, Injured by DUI on Rt 21

Personal injury lawsuits against drunk drivers are subject to numerous limitations. Similar to any other accident where Personal Injury Protection benefits come into play, a victim may only sue a drunk driver for non-economic losses, those arising from subjective, non-monetary damages, if they sustained a permanent injury such as dismemberment, disfigurement, death, or the function of or loss of a body part.

The permanent injury condition that applies to non-economic damages still applies in cases involving drunk drivers.

Winning your lawsuit is only the halfway point of your fight. Unfortunately, a court-ordered judgment is only helpful if the defendant is able to pay. More often than not, however, the driver is unable to pay the damages on their own so, once again, it becomes a matter of insurance.

The law divides damages into two categories: compensatory, which are intended to compensate the victim, and punitive, which are intended to serve as a punishment for the defendant and a warning to others. 

Punitive damages are obtainable in New Jersey only when the negligent party behaved with willful and deliberate indifference to the safety of others.

If you were hit by a driver under the influence, contact our car accident lawyers in New Jersey at (800) 469-6476 to see how we can help you.

Notes: Outside sources were used in the creation of this post including news bulletins and first-hand accounts of the accident and injuries involved. As a result, the details of the accident presented have not been independently verified. If you have identified any false information in the story or would like the post to be removed, please inform us immediately, and we will correct the information or remove the post. 

Disclaimer: As a member of the local community, we at Metro Law strive to improve the overall safety and quality of life for everyone who lives in our beloved state. We are extremely saddened by these accidents but hope that through an awareness of these dangers, those in our community will take precautions to avoid these accidents. This is not a solicitation for business, and this information should not be misconstrued as medical or legal advice. We wish only the best and quickest recovery to all those involved in the accident. The photos depicted in this post are not from the actual accident scene.