Jury selection to begin in Corasanti’s civil trial

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – Dr. James Corasanti’s civil trial is slated to begin with jury selection Monday. He hit and killed teenager Alix Rice with his car in 2011. However, he was acquitted of the most serious criminal charges.

Rice was killed on Heim Road, in Amherst, in 2011. She was 18.

Corasanti insisted he didn’t know he hit her. He served time behind bars for a misdemeanor DWI, but was acquitted of all felony charges including manslaughter.

News 4 Legal Analyst Frank Clark said the civil trial will likely be very different from the criminal case, partly because of the standard of proof.

“In a criminal case, the standard of proof is beyond a reasonable doubt.” Clark explained, “In a civil trial, they call it a preponderance of the evidence. Which means 52 percent to 48 percent. Which is a standard much lower than a criminal case.”

Clark says the plaintiff may try the case differently than the prosecutor did. He says lawyers for both sides have a great advantage because they can look at the strong and weak components of the criminal trial.

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