The driver of the car, Curtis W. Mertensmeyer, who was 20 at the time of the accident, was sentenced to 5 years prison for involuntary manslaughter and leaving the scene of the accident. The sentence was later reduced to 4 months time in prison. The Riemann family stated they felt like the reduced sentence was a slap on the wrist for a crime that killed their son. They also felt that the sentence was reduced because of the wealth and influence of the Mertensmeyer family.
The party hosts have not yet been named in a criminal case as the investigation is trying to determine whether the hosts knew the minors were drinking and if they knowingly provided the alcohol to the minors.
This is a classic dram shop law case and one all Kansas and Missouri citizens should pay particular attention to as we approach the season for graduation parties. Dram shop laws pertain to the entities that serve alcohol, whether it be a party host, restaurant or bar. In Missouri, these groups can be held liable under certain circumstances for serving alcohol to someone who then is involved in a drunk driving accident.
The personal injury lawyers at Roswold Law Group, Kansas City Accident Injury Attorneys, understand the dire consequences of drunk driving accidents. We have been representing the victims of drunk driving collisions for more than 15 years. We extend our sympathies to the family and friends of Daniel Riemann and hope that all Kansas and Missouri citizens understand the potential outcomes of drinking and driving as well as serving alcohol at parties.