Last February Sarah Kunz died at a Salt Lake City intersection. Police say a pickup truck driven by Gary Siddoway rammed into her. Authorities later learned he had suffered a seizure prior to the accident.
“He should have never been driving and he knew there were concerns that were medically there," says Sim Gill, Salt Lake’s District Attorney.
Despite the warnings, prosecutors say Siddoway drove his pickup truck that day and suffered another seizure and blacked out.
“He drives through a red light and hits a car,” says Gill.
Kunz died later at the hospital.
Nearly half a year later Siddoway is being charged with manslaughter. And when investigators looked into his past, they learned he repeatedly suffered seizures.
According to court documents Siddoway told his doctor "several seizures are happening every several days."
“In Coalville he actually went off the road and hit a fence and blanked out,” says Gill. “In Provo he had done the same sort of thing."
Despite the seizures Siddoway got his driver's license renewed. State officials say all a person needs is clearance from his doctor if there are medical issues. They say the law doesn't require doctors to personally report potential problems of patients.
“There's not a requirement but it's recommended a physician report anything that might affect someone's ability to drive safely,” says Kim Gibb with the state’s Drivers License division.
Gibb says there are avenues for family, friends or even a medical person to anonymously report issues that someone close to them may have.
Visit their website at www.publicsafety.utah.gov for more information.
But in this case prosecutors say it's up to drivers like Siddoway to police oneself.
“(He) nonetheless ignored that risk and chose to drive and as a result one human being is dead," Gill says.