Family of Westfield drunken driving victim gets $1.4 million


NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (AP) -- A jury has awarded $1.4 million to the family of a Westfield man killed by a drunken driver in 2010.

The Hampshire Superior Court jury determined Wednesday that 46-year-old Craig Barton was grossly negligent and acting recklessly when he got behind the wheel and struck 22-year-old Frederick Kareta III in August 2010.

Kareta was retrieving mail from his aunt’s mailbox in South Hadley when a speeding Barton lost control of his car and struck him.

Kareta’s father tells The Daily Hampshire Gazette he doesn’t expect to see a dime, but wanted Barton held accountable.

Barton represented himself at the trial.

The Springfield man pleaded guilty to vehicular homicide and other charges in September 2011 in connection with Kareta’s death and was sentenced to five to seven years in prison.


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