California Vehicle Code §20003 and 20004 dictate a driver’s duty upon injury or death to another driver or pedestrian.
California Vehicle Code §20003 states in pertinent part:
“The driver of any vehicle involved in an accident resulting in injury to or death of any person shall also give his or her name, current residence address, the names and current residence addresses of any occupant of the driver’s vehicle injured in the accident, the registration number of the vehicle he or she is driving, and the name and current residence address of the owner to the person struck or the driver or occupants of any vehicle collided with, and shall give the information to any traffic or police officer at the scene of the accident. The driver also shall render to any person injured in the accident reasonable assistance, including transporting, or making arrangements for transporting, any injured person to a physician, surgeon, or hospital for medical or surgical treatment if it is apparent that treatment is necessary or if that transportation is requested by any injured person.”
It is a driver’s duty to provide information as specified in the statute to another driver, or pedestrian that has been injured. If the driver fails to do so, they may be facing charges for a hit and run. A Los Angeles hit and run is a serious charge. It will be charged as a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on the extent of the injuries.
For example, Donna is driving at night. It is foggy and she does not see the pedestrian appear in front of her due to the lack of light. She hits the pedestrian. She was driving slower than the speed limit at a speed of about 10 miles per hour due to the fog and therefore hit the pedestrian at a very low speed causing a broken leg, and thankfully no further injuries. Afraid of getting arrested, Donna does not stop to administer help and give the pedestrian her contact information.
This situation is at the lower end of the injury spectrum, and it is likely that Donna, if convicted, will have a lesser sentence.
California Vehicle Code §20004 states in pertinent part:
“In the event of death of any person resulting from an accident, the driver of any vehicle involved after fulfilling the requirements of this division, and if there be no traffic or police officer at the scene of the accident to whom to give the information required by Section 20003, shall, without delay, report the accident to the nearest office of the Department of the California Highway Patrol or office of a duly authorized police authority and submit with the report the information required by Section 20003.”
Let’s consider that Donna, instead of a broken leg, ends up causing the death of the pedestrian and drives away. This will most certainly be a felony resulting in jail time.
If you are facing hit and run charges, it is important to be aware that there are many different stages for charges. In addition, the sentence will vary based upon the facts and what is presented to the Judge. It is important to have an experience Hit And Run lawyer represent you in court so that you get the best possible change of having your case reduced or dismissed.