Today’s news that Dean Hancock, Josh Hancock’s father, is pursuing a civil wrongful death suit struck me as sad, ridiculous, and all-too-typical for today. The parties to blame according to Dean are the bartender and manager (Mike’s daughter Patricia) at Mike Shannon’s for serving him when he was visibly drunk, the tow truck driver and tow company for the tow truck’s failure to provide adequate warning (huh? its flashers were on), and the poor driver whose crash into the median provided the impetus for the tow truck’s arrival.
Out of all these defendants, the only one with a tiny shred of culpability is Shannon’s, if in fact, Hancock was visibly drunk and they continued to serve him. Still, they offered to call him a cab and were waved off when he said he was walking. Is it the responsibility of the bartender to escort the patron back to the hotel? That seems a bit much to ask.
This complete refusal to accept personal responsibility really taints the tragedy and must make some of the Cardinals want to rip those 32 patches off their jerseys. Let’s review the facts of this death: Josh’s blood alcohol level was almost twice the legal level, he was talking on his cell phone, driving 68 in a 55 mph zone, and had marijuana and a pipe in the car. About the only thing he could have added to that list of driving offenses would have been eating Taco Bell and putting on lipstick. How Dean Hancock can ignore all those factors and see his son as an innocent victim in this is beyond me, and it’s even worse that some lawyers who don’t have the excuse that they are grieving and looking for answers are putting this case forward.