As comedian/actor Tracy Morgan struggles to survive an auto accident involving a Walmart 18-wheeler, the truck driver insists that he has been unfairly demonized.
Kevin Roper, 35, tweeted “I had an ‘ACCIDENT’ which unfortunately occurred with a lot of media spotlight. I was never charged at the scene of the accident because once again I was not guilty of any crime.”
Officials were not obligated to charge Roper immediately and later charged him with vehicular homicide and assault. A motorist was killed in the three-vehicle crash on the New Jersey Turnpike.
Roper believes that he is facing prosecution only because Morgan was critically injured in the truck accident, spurring a media frenzy. He denies allegations that he was drowsy or drunk when the trucking accident occurred, but there seems to be little disputing that he caused the tragic crash.
Even if he was sober and in compliance with federal hours-of-service (HOS) laws, he will face criminal punishment and civil liability for his wrongdoing. His employer, Walmart, will also face wrongful death and personal injury liability through the doctrine of respondeat superior, which makes an employer liable for the actions of an employee that take place within the scope of employment.
Source: NY Daily News, “Walmart Driver Defends Himself In Crash That Critically Injured Tracy Morgan: ‘I Had An Accident.’” Daniel Beekman, June 11, 2014