Hit and Run
California hit and run laws prohibit drivers from fleeing the scene of an accident, and they require a driver involved in an accident to perform certain actions. Often, a driver gets scared about the possibility of being held accountable for an accident after colliding with another vehicle or a pedestrian. In other cases, a driver might not realize that they hit another vehicle or a pedestrian. In still other cases, a driver has been driving drunk, leaves the scene, and does not even remember hitting another car or a pedestrian. If you are charged with a hit and run, you should consult an experienced Los Angeles hit and run lawyer. William S. Kroger understands the challenges that you are facing and can aggressively advocate for you.Hit and Run Laws
Drivers are not always aware of what their duties are when they get involved in an accident, or they may not know the extent of those duties. There are also situations in which a misunderstanding between drivers who are trying to fulfill their duties results in hit and run charges. For example, drivers may comply with some legal requirements, but not all of them. It is crucial to retain a skillful attorney to mount a strong, appropriate defense if you have been charged with a hit and run.
A driver connected to an accident must stop as soon as reasonably possible in the circumstances. In a situation involving damaged property, a driver needs to show their driver’s license to the owner of the damaged property and give their name and address. If the driver is not the owner of the car, they must give the name and current residential address of the car’s owner. If the owner of property that is damaged in an accident cannot be located, the driver is supposed to leave the information above in a note that is placed somewhere that can be seen on the damaged property. The driver is also supposed to report the accident to the police or the Highway Patrol.
If somebody is hurt at the scene, the driver must not only stop but also must reasonably assist the injured victim. The driver is supposed to provide their driver’s license, the name and address of the vehicle owner, and the registration number. A law enforcement agency is supposed to be notified.Penalties
A prosecutor may choose whether to charge a hit and run as a felony or a misdemeanor, depending on the facts surrounding the hit and run. Regardless of the level of the charge, you should retain a hit and run attorney in Los Angeles to protect your rights. While most hit and runs are misdemeanors, you might be charged with a felony hit and run if you were involved in an accident in which somebody was killed or hurt if you fled the scene, even if you did not cause the accident. You might face felony charges if you caused injuries or death to someone and willfully failed to perform a required duty, such as rendering assistance. A willful failure is purposeful, but it need not involve an intent to harm or to violate the law. Misdemeanor hit and runs involving only property damage can result in a sentence of up to six months in jail. However, when a hit and run is charged as a felony, you can face up to three years in prison. You can face up to four years in prison if a hit and run triggers a death or permanent injuries. These penalties are quite serious, so you should consult a Los Angeles hit and run attorney without delay if you have been charged, or if you believe that you may be charged.
If you were driving drunk when you fled an accident scene, you could face DUI charges as well as hit and run charges if you are caught.
There are certain defenses that your attorney may be able to raise. For example, we may be able to argue that you did not know that there was an accident or that you did not know that someone was injured or that property was damaged. Or we may be able to argue that you made reasonable efforts to comply with your duties under the circumstances.Consult a Trustworthy Hit and Run Attorney
If you are accused of a hit and run in the Los Angeles area, you should hire a trustworthy criminal defense attorney. Defense attorneys need to examine every angle of a case, work efficiently, and accurately assess the key issues in dispute. Defending the accused since 1997, William S. Kroger has never worked as a prosecutor to put people in jail. He has always worked against the system to present the strongest available defense for each client. You can trust him to fight for you if you need a hit and run lawyer in the Los Angeles area. William S. Kroger represents clients throughout Los Angeles County and elsewhere in Southern California. Contact us at 323-655-5700 or via our online form.