Parents Sue, Blame FaceTime For Death Of Daughter

Parents Sue, Blame FaceTime For Death Of Daughter

A Texas couple is suing Apple, claiming its FaceTime app is responsible for the death of their 5-year-old daughter. James and Bethany Modisette say Apple was granted a patent in 2014 for a FaceTime design that would’ve used GPS tracking to determine speed of travel to prevent people from using the app while driving, reports Courthouse News. Yet Apple never implemented the design, nor did it strongly warn drivers against using the app, per the lawsuit filed Friday. As a result, Garrett Wilhelm, 22, was able to use FaceTime while driving 65mph on Interstate 35 near Dallas on Christmas Eve in 2014, when he slammed into the back of the Modisettes’ vehicle, which had slowed with other vehicles because of a traffic accident, say police.

Wilhelm’s vehicle rolled “up and over the driver’s side of the Modisette car,” the lawsuit states. Driver James and 5-year-old Moriah, seated behind him, were both critically injured. James, Bethany, and 8-year-old daughter Isabella were taken by ambulance to Denton Regional Medical Center, along with Wilhelm, while Moriah was airlifted to Cook Children’s Medical Center in Fort Worth, where she died of her injuries, reports the Denton Record-Chronicle. Wilhelm—whose FaceTime app was still active when officers arrived on the scene, say police—now faces a manslaughter charge. But Apple’s failures “were a substantial factor in causing the plaintiffs’ injuries and decedent’s death,” the lawsuit states. Apple has not responded. (This woman was on FaceTime when a deadly tornado struck.)


4 replies on “Parents Sue, Blame FaceTime For Death Of Daughter”

IDIOTS! Do hammers come with an official warning to not ram the nail remover into your eyes? Do spoons come with a warning label to not ram them into your anus? Do laptops come with a warning not to eat the screens?
Don’t use your frickin’ phone while driving. These parents are at fault.
In Australia, we have laws that make using a phone while driving illegal. If someone was to release an app that was specifically designed to be used while driving, it’s still the user’s responsibility to avoid using their phone. The developer would be in trouble, but it wouldn’t be their fault for causing an accident. It still falls to the sound-judgement of the driver to engage in actions that allow them to drive to the best of their ability, and to avoid actions that make their driving more dangerous.

Not sure how it was the parents’ fault. It was the guy who rear-ended them that was using a phone, not them.

I thought the same thing too at first but I’m assuming he means that the parents are at fault for trying to sue Apple not for the accident..

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