NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD)- The family of a man who was killed earlier this year after being hit by a car in North Charleston is now taking legal action against the driver and an auto parts store.
Carlos Dunlap Sr., the father of local NFL player Carlos Dunlap, was crossing Ashley Phosphate Road when he was struck by a Black Nissan Rogue around 10:40 p.m. on Jan. 22. He was taken to the hospital where he later succumbed to injuries sustained during the collision, according to a police report.
In a lawsuit filed Sept. 15 in Charleston County, the plaintiff— who filed on behalf of Dunlap’s three children— alleges that Advance Auto Parts on Savannah Highway “sold to [driver] and caused to be installed” an unlawful sunscreen device, or window tint.
In doing so, the complaint says, Advance Auto Parts “failed to exercise reasonable care in causing to be sold and installed a sunscreen device which was inherently dangerous” and in violation of a state statute.
The relevant statute mandates that any sun screening device can only be used along the top of the windshield and cannot extend beyond the AS1 line—approximately 5 to 6 inches from the top.
It further makes it unlawful for a driver to operate a vehicle with a non-compliant tint and for any person to sell and/or install a non-compliant device.
The complaint claims that the tint on the driver’s front windshield sold by Advance Auto Parts “prevented certain levels of light from passing through the windshield and caused [defendant] to fail to see Mr. Dunlap who was walking in plain sight.”
As a result of the crash, the complainants say Dunlap Sr. suffered “mental distress, emotional anguish and death” and that his surviving family members suffered “mental shock and suffering, wounded feelings, and loss of companionship,” among other injuries.
Both the driver and Advance Auto Parts are being sued for negligent actions that led to the “wrongful and premature death” of Dunlap.
Mullins McCleod, one of the attorneys representing the Dunlap family, gave the following statement:
“Mr. Dunlap’s untimely and wrongful death was as tragic as it was preventable.”
Advance Auto Parts did not return a request for comment.
No criminal charges have been filed in this case.