Lawsuit filed over wreck that killed five

By Justin Anderson | Jul 8, 2009


MORGANTOWN -- A Monongalia County lawsuit seeks damages from a man who drove drunk and killed five people and the two bars where the man drank that day.

Named in the lawsuit, filed June 22, is Brian J. Stone, of Morgantown, who was convicted of 25 charges last year related to the July 8, 2007, crash that occurred on Interstate 68 near Morgantown. He was sentenced to 41 years in prison.

Also named in the lawsuit are Automatic Slims Hot Spot and Novichenk L.L.C., doing business as Novichenk's Tailgater's Pub 2.

The plaintiffs are: Marcia Perry, individually and as administratrix of the estate of Donnell Perry, Jacquesha Jones-Perry and Jentil Jones-Perry; Justine Jones-Perry; Myiah Barnes, an infant by her mother Latena Perry; Korie Chaput and Ayana Perry, infants, by their mother Tiffany Chaput; Sheena Evans, individually and as personal representative of the estate of Courtney Evans; John Evans, an infant, by his mother Sheena Evans; and Cynthia Moore-Sivert, individually and as personal representative of the estate of Sawyer Evans.

According to the complaint, Stone had been drinking at the two establishments prior to the collision. The lawsuit says the owners of the taverns should have known Stone was already intoxicated and should not have served him.

The wreck occurred at around 10:15 p.m.

Clarksburg residents Donnell Perry, Marcia Perry, Jacquesha Jones-Perry, Jentil Jones-Perry, Junstine Jones-Perry, Myiah Barnes, Korie Chaput and Ayana Perry were traveling west on I-68 in a 2005 Chevrolet Trailblazer. Donnell was driving.

At the same time, Courtney Evans, Sheena Evans, Sawyer Evans and John Evans were traveling east on I-68 in a 2001 Ford Taurus. Courtney was driving.

Stone drove his 2007 Ford F-150 onto the eastbound lanes of I-68 at the Pierpont Road interchange and struck the rear of the Taurus, the complaint says.

The collision sent the Taurus across the median and into the path of the Trailblazer.

Donnell Perry, Jacquesha Jones-Perry, Jentil Jones-Perry, Courtney Evans and Sawyer Evans all died in the crash. The rest sustained severe injuries, the complaint says.

Stone claimed that another vehicle struck his pick-up, forcing it into the rear of the Taurus. Police and eyewitnesses said otherwise.

Stone was unhurt in the crash and left the scene on foot. His blood alcohol content level was 0.23. The legal limit in West Virginia is 0.08.

Stone had several prior convictions for drunken driving before the fatal crash.

The plaintiffs are seeking damages on counts of wrongful death, negligence, emotional distress and loss of consortium. They also are seeking punitive damages.

Avrum Levicoff, Aaron Lee Harrah and Bradley H. Thompson are represnting the plaintiffs.

Monongalia Circuit Court case number: 09-C-428

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