According to the Raleigh, North Carolina (NC) police department the doctor originally accused of a DWI during a fatal car accident will be charged with second degree murder.
Dr. Raymond Cook was driving his Mercedes Benz at speeds of almost 85 mph when he failed to stop at a red light at the intersections of Lead Mine and Strickland Roads and struck Ellen Shapiro. Shapiro was entering the roadway at the time of the accident. She was traveling at 20 mph. Shapiro was brought to a local Raleigh, North Carolina (NC) hospital where she died from injuries sustained in the car accident.
Initially the Raleigh Police Department charged Dr. Raymond Cook with a DWI, failure to reduce speed, reckless driving and death by motor vehicle. However, after his first court appearance Cook’s charge was raised to second degree murder.
Drunk driving related car accidents are on the rise in North Carolina. My colleague, Richard Shapiro, recently wrote an article about the increase in car accident fatalities in Fayetteville, North Carolina. Up to 85 percent of these increased car accidents were reported to be involved with drunk driving. Local law enforcement agencies have cracked down on suspected drunk drivers all over the state. However, not every drunk driver can be caught before an accident occurs. Such was the tragic case of Ellen Shapiro.
Drunken driving accidents can happen at any time and the results are often fatal. You can do your part to cut down on these accidents by using the designated driver program. If you plan to drink, plan to call a cab or have a designated sober driver at the end of the night. If you do not plan to drink, offer to be a designated driver for someone else. It could save a life.