Leaving the scene of an accident is a serious charge and, it comes in the form of a misdemeanor or a felony–depending upon the severity of the accident. But, what you don’t realize is that behind the curtain, if you peek behind this, you’ll know why it gets so serious so quickly.
And that is because the prosecutors are very suspicious of a leaving the scene of an accident. They instantly think you were drunk driving, that’s why you left. You had a trunk full of narcotics, that’s why you left. You had some concealed weapons and guns in the car and you don’t have a permit–that’s a felony, and that’s why you left. Their mind wanders. If you’ve ever been in a relationship where somebody is, like, really jealous and you just stop and do something innocent but their mind is wandering that you did all these bad things–that’s leaving the scene of an accident.
That’s why the punishment gets so crazy on these things. They think you got away with something. You didn’t get away with something, it’s a defendable case. There’s lots of ways to fix a problem like this.
For example, you are allowed to leave the scene of an accident if you are going to get medical treatment. This medical treatment doesn’t have to be the emergency room. It can be Centra-Care, it can be Walgreens. Medical treatment is really broadly defined in the statute but it’s a defense. You don’t have to sit around at an accident scene while your diabetes is going crazy from being jarred around. If you need to go get a shot or go do this or go do that for medical reasons I say you take care of your health. You take care of your medical situation and you call an attorney and we’ll take care of the rest. Medical is one of the many defenses to leaving the scene of an accident.
The second thing you need to consider is, and I know that I’m an attorney and I know that this is going to sound really self-serving like asking a barber if you need a haircut but–you do need an attorney immediately on a leaving the scene because “The Knock” is going to come at your door from the cop that is looking for a confession.
They’re always looking for confessions on leaving the scene because half the time they can’t figure out who was driving. So, when they knock on the door and the owner of the vehicle answers–confessions, witnesses start coming out of the woodwork. Your mom answers the door “Oh yea, Johnnie drives that car. Oh yea, I saw him leave the other night”. Oh, now you’re halfway to a conviction.
Everybody needs to be quiet. Everybody needs to leave the talking to a defense attorney like me. As a side note, I know we have this impulse to answer our front door but there’s nothing in the Constitution that says that you have to miss the 4th Quarter of some football game, or overtime, or what-have-you, let your beer get warm let your nachos get cold so that you can answer the door and talk to some trooper. That’s not legally required of you. You may sit there and enjoy your home. That’s the law. I suggest you first get an attorney and make sure that we are the ones answering the questions for you. So, once you do that the case will fall apart for the State Attorney’s Office and you won’t have to worry about all the severe penalties that come with leaving the scene of an accident. I wish you luck on your case, call a local attorney to have this thing handled.