Petition Seeks To Ban Gruesome Images From Accident Scenes

(CBS) — People who’ve lost loved ones in accidents say the tragedy is traumatic enough.

But imagine seeing photos of friends and family members’ bodies all over social media.

Some say that’s too much to handle. Now, one person is fighting to stop it.

CBS 2’s Dana Kozlov reports.

Kaley Sullivan says she closes her eyes but can’t shut out the images of her friends, Miranda Valles and Matt Summers, dead on the Eisenhower Expressway.  Both were killed — Summers’ body ripped apart — in a motorcycle accident 14 months ago.

Sullivan wasn’t there, but she saw them on Facebook. She says the images will haunt her forever.

Miranda’s mother, Dawn Valles, says social media is how many family members learned of her death.

Valles and Sullivan say, sadly, this isn’t unique. Gruesome photos of Steven Thomas and 75-year-old Edward Brandseth,  killed in a Maywood accident last week, still mar the Internet. And there are many others.

“On a human level, it’s wrong,” Dawn Valles says.

Both woman say this needs to change, so that accident victims have dignity and privacy.

It’s why Sullivan started petition last week, fighting to make it illegal for anyone to take video or photos within 500 feet of an accident scene involving serious injury or death. Sofar, she has more than five hundred signatures.

Sullivan and Valles say social media and websites need to be more vigilant about what they allow.


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