On a rainy October night in 2012, 17-year-old Brandon Majewski and two of his friends were riding their bikes to get hot dogs when they were hit from behind by an SUV. Majewski was killed; the other teen boys were injured. Now the 42-year-old woman driving the SUV, Sharlene Simon, is suing all three—plus Majewski's parents and his brother, who has since died, the Toronto Star reports. Simon says she suffered emotional trauma in the accident, which happened about 55 miles north of Toronto, and is claiming $1.35 million in damages. "They did not apply their brakes properly," her lawsuit states. "They were incompetent bicyclists." The Majewski family's lawyer is now suing Simon on behalf of the victims, in an effort to get medical and funeral costs covered, the Barrie Examiner reports.
Majewski's family tells the Sun they are devastated. "They’re kids," says his father. "And they have a right to make mistakes ... it was a wet, dark road—what about slowing down?" Simon has admitted she was going about 6mph over the speed limit and says she didn't see the boys or their pedal reflectors. Police did not suspect alcohol was involved, and she was not given a breathalyzer or charged with any crime (though the National Post says she was given a "roadside screening" and found to have no alcohol in her blood—while the lawsuit against her alleges she was under the influence and using her cellphone at the time of the accident). Six months after Majewski's death, his 23-year-old brother was found dead of an overdose that, his family says, was not a suicide but a result of grief. "This has ripped our family apart," says Majewski's dad. "And now this woman has the gall to try to profit from our dead child she killed? Profit from another boy who was almost crippled?" (In another controversial lawsuit, parents are suing after their son was punished for recording his bullies.)