Kevin Roper, the Walmart driver involved in Tracy Morgan’s accident last June, lost his bid to get a delay on the civil case filed against Walmart. Roper contended that Tracy Morgan’s case against Walmart should be put on hold because the criminal case against him is still pending. However, a judge ruled that Roper shouldn’t interfere with the civil case since the driver isn’t a party in the Walmart suit. According to the judge, allowing Roper to intervene in the civil suit would delay Tracy Morgan’s action for months, or even years.
— TheWrap (@TheWrap) February 4, 2015
Magistrate Judge Lois Goodman wrote, “Suspending this case indefinitely would prevent the original parties from seeking resolution of their dispute.”
And while Goodman denied Roper’s request for a delay, she did agree to halt the case for 30 days to give the driver a shot at an appeal.
Back in June 7, 2014, a Walmart truck being driven by Roper smashed into the limo van carrying Tracy Morgan and his entourage. The accident resulted in the death of comedian James McNair, while three people suffered serious injuries. The injured passengers include Morgan, Jeffrey Millea, and Ardley Fuqua. It should also be noted that Roper was driving 65 mph before he slammed into the van. The speed limit at that stretch of the New Jersey turnpike was lowered to 45mph from 55mph because of construction.
Morgan’s civil suit against Walmart claims that the company forced Roper to work overly long hours, resulting in Roper’s condition during the time of the accident. According to prosecutors, Roper hadn’t slept for 24 hours prior to the accident. The civil case doesn’t name Roper as a defendant, but he has been charged with death by auto and assault by auto in a separate criminal case.
Roper’s request for a delay stems from the fact that evidence used in the civil case is related to the criminal case against him. The request was denied because Roper failed to provide examples of how the civil case could adversely affect his trial. The judge ruled that if either side directly asks him for information, Roper could file another request.
— Daily Mail Celebrity (@DailyMailCeleb) October 1, 2014
Tracy Morgan suffered a traumatic brain injury because of the accident and is still on the road to recovery. On January 31, Morgan was seen walking to a hospital in New York with his fiancé, Megan Wollover. Morgan suffered from a broken leg, broken femur, broken nose, and broken ribs as a result of the accident.
[Image via YouTube]