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One sled dog killed, many injured after collision with snowmobile

A snowmobiler has been charged with assault, reckless driving, reckless endangerment and criminal mischief after driving his snowmobile into two sled dog teams during the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race. The man, 26-year-old Arnold Demoski, claims the incident was an accident, and that he had been driving his snowmobile after a night of drinking. One of the sled team's drivers, Aliy Zirkle, claims that Demoski had circled around several times and driven his machine at her sled multiple times before driving off. One dog is dead and two are seriously injured as a result of the collisions. 

While Demoski will certainly face criminal charges, it seems likely that he could also face civil charges for the death of one dog and injuries to the others. Courts have handled animal injury and death differently, and it is therefore unclear what sort of compensation the sled drivers might expect from a lawsuit. What does seem clear, however, is that Demoski drove his snowmobile into the sled teams, and that there will be consequences of some sort. 

It is illegal to operate a snowmobile while under the influence of alcohol. Therefore, even in the best-case scenario, where Demoski didn't intentionally collide with the sled dog teams, he could still be convicted of DUI and face civil lawsuits for the losses and damages now linked to his negligence

If you or someone you love has suffered injuries or other losses because of someone's criminal behavior, prosecuting that person under criminal law can provide a measure of justice, but it can't compensate you for the specific financial losses and emotional suffering you may be experiencing. For that you will need to enlist the help of a civil law attorney who can file a personal injury lawsuit on your behalf. 

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