August 29th, 2013
03:30 AM ET

Texting someone driving in New Jersey illegal

We've all heard the dictum: Don't text and drive. Now, a New Jersey state appeals court has an addendum: Don't text a driver - or you could be held liable if he causes a crash.

Kyle Best was behind the wheel of his pickup in September 2009 driving down a rural highway, when Shannon Colonna sent him a text.

The two were teens at the time. He was 18; she was 17, and they were dating. They sent each other 62 texts that day, according to court documents. That's 14 messages an hour.

In the opposing lane of traffic, David Kubert was cruising along on a big, blue touring motorcycle with his wife Linda along for the ride. They approached Best at exactly the wrong time.

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Filed under: Accidents • Courts • Justice • Lawsuit • New Jersey • U.S. • World Update
soundoff (40 Responses)
  1. Jennifer Rubin

    The owner of the liquor store/bar CAN be held liable. I am surprised you were unaware of this. Obviously, the onus is on the receiver of the text not to display their stupidity by answering the text while driving. This is the gist of the law.

    August 30, 2013 at 5:15 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Jennifer Rubin

    Although the store/bar owner wouldn't be charged with a DUI, no.

    August 30, 2013 at 5:18 pm | Report abuse |
  3. chrissy

    Bar owners yes, liquor store owners no! Still doesnt answer the question: When sending a text to someone, HOW would that person know the one they sent the text too. . . . Was driving??

    August 30, 2013 at 9:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • Scottish Mama

      @chrissy hello- this is under the phychic bill.

      August 30, 2013 at 9:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • JeffinHouston

      I'll type this slow. You don't know if the person is driving. IF the driver tells you he is, and IF you continue to send texts, and IF he gets into an accident, the court may find you liable. AS HAPPENED IN THE STORY, IF YOU HAD READ IT.

      August 30, 2013 at 10:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • JeffinHouston

      Depends on the state the liquor store is in. There are country laws that apply, too. (Dry counties, anyone?) In your state, perhaps. Sheesh, state laws vary. Your not really good at this, are you?

      August 30, 2013 at 10:27 pm | Report abuse |
  4. chrissy

    Heywood Yabiteme @ Jeff! And hello @ mama!

    August 30, 2013 at 10:33 pm | Report abuse |
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