Leaving the scene of a vehicle collision is a hit and run and something most everyone understands is wrong. What if your vehicle just broke a fence? Would you try to contact the property owners? Not admitting to this crime and driving away, could make you guilty of a misdemeanor crime in California.
A hit and run is when someone knowingly leaves the scene of an accident or collision resulting in property damage, injuries, or death. Under the code, the District Attorney (DA) must be able to prove that the person in question was, in fact, involved in an accident while driving or that after parking their vehicle it somehow rolled away. Secondly, the prosecutor must prove that the accident resulted in damage to someone else’s property that the driver either knew the property was damaged or that it was possible that there was damage, there were injuries to other people besides themselves, and “willfully" left the scene.
CA Motor Vehicle Code (CVC) 20001 & 20002 Hit and Run
The two types of hit and run offenses in California are misdemeanor and felony according to the CVC:
· CVC 20002 (a) defines situations where there is property damage only and no injuries, which is a misdemeanor crime. If convicted, you could face a fine up to $1,000, six months in county jail, restitution or compensation, and two points.
· CVC 20001 (a) To be charged with a felony of leaving the scene of an accident, someone needs to have been injured or killed. If convicted of a hit and run felony offense it could cost you up to $10,000 in fines and fees, up to four years in prison, or both, compensation, and two points.
The owner or driver of the vehicle need not be ruled at fault, nor is there a dollar amount assigned for damage, or significance of any injuries. Only that the driver knew there was damage, possible injuries, or deaths and left the scene of the accident without leaving contact information or notifying law enforcement (LE) officials. Fault can be assigned to you when your actions caused two other vehicles to collide even when your vehicle did not hit anything and you left the scene.
A civil compromise is when the victim or victims agree that they have been fully compensated and do not wish to participate in a prosecution of the alleged driver. This is by no means automatic, when the judge does not agree, which happens frequently when there are allegations of alcohol or drug impairment involved, you may still face trial for the hit and run. However, when the judge agrees, the charges against you could be dismissed.
When you have been charged, or involved in a hit and run accident, it is vital to hire an attorney who will listen to your circumstances and walk you through the legal process.
Hire a Local Traffic Ticket Defense Lawyer
To avoid witness tampering charges or violence when the victim is upset about your hit and run, it is advisable to have a lawyer contact the victim. Hire a traffic ticket defense lawyer that defends traffic tickets in your neighborhood. These guys know the LE officers, the court clerk, and the judges. They also know how the traffic court judges feel about different motions and compromises.
In Riverside, Kern, Kings, Fresno, or some other south-central CA counties, call Bigger & Harman, 661-349-9300, for vigorous representation for traffic violations. Or email: firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange a FREE initial consultation about your hit and run accident.
En español, llame al 661-349-9755.