Fleeing Driver Strikes Child in Richmond
I’m Ed Smith, a Richmond car accident lawyer. A young boy was seriously injured in Richmond on Wednesday, September 27, after he was struck by a fleeing driver. The driver of the vehicle has been apprehended.
Details of the Accident
The accident happened after the child ran away from his mother as she was trying to secure him in the back seat of her vehicle at about 11:30 in the morning. The child ran into McDonald Avenue where it crosses 27th Street. The hit and run vehicle was identified by police as a smart car, which was red with a dark roof.
Injuries in the Accident
The young boy was transported to a medical center with trauma to his head. Authorities said the child underwent brain surgery. There is no word at this time as to whether the smart car driver was hurt in the accident.
The owner of the car was interrogated by police but claimed he was not involved in the accident and had left his vehicle at a body shop for repairs. At some point during the police investigation, it was determined that the driver, who is facing felony charges, was an employee at the place where the car was being repaired.
Hitting Another Vehicle in California
The law in California is clear. If a motorist hits another vehicle, a pedestrian or someone’s property such as a mail box, they must stop. If you hit someone, whether they are in a vehicle or not, provide them with your name, the name of your insurance company and an identification number if possible, your driver’s licence number, the name of the vehicle’s owner and his or her address. If the motor vehicle you hit is parked or if you hit someone’s property and the owner cannot be found, leave the information in a conspicuous place such as under the windshield wiper. Call the California Highway Patrol or local police and report it. An officer will come to the scene and take a statement. If no one comes, you must file a report yourself at a CHP office or in a police station of the community where the accident happened.
When someone is hurt in an accident, the law in California is very specific. You must stop, provide information and lend aid if possible. It is a good idea to let other motorists know that an accident has happened by leaving your car’s lights on and using the vehicle’s hazard lights. If you have a cellphone, call 911 and provide the information so rescue personnel and police can find the accident site. If you have time while you wait for help, obtain all pertinent contact information you can such as the other driver’s license number, address, insurance company and date of birth. You should also get the same information from the vehicle’s occupants. If witnesses are present, obtain their names, telephone numbers and addresses if possible. Let them tell you what they saw and write it down. Take a picture of the other vehicle, and note the model number and make if you can. If a police officer arrives at the scene, ask for his or her badge number. You should also ask for a copy of the report they make.
What Happens If a Driver Flees the Scene of the Crash?
When a driver leaves the scene when another person is injured or killed, they can be charged with hit and run under California law. If you leave, you can be charged with a felony or a misdemeanor. The difference between the two is:
- Felony Hit and Run: If another party suffers an injury, particularly a catastrophic injury such as traumatic brain injury or if they die, a driver who flees can be charged with felony hit and run. The penalties for this offense are two to four years jail time and/or a fine of $1,000 to $10,000.
- Misdemeanor Hit and Run: This involves less serious injury to another person. Penalties in this case are between 90 to 352 days in jail and/or a fine of $1,000 to $10,000 dollars.
- Property Damage: If you leave the scene after causing property damage you might be sentenced to six months jail time and/or a fine of not more than $1,000.
Richmond Hit and Run Accidents
According to the Office of Traffic Safety in California, the city of Richmond had 39 hit and run accidents in 2014, placing the city 25th out of 57 similar cities by size. Contra Costa County had 246 hit and run injuries or deaths, giving it a rank of 55 out of 58 other counties in the state.
Richmond Car Accident Lawyer
I’m Ed Smith, a Richmond car accident lawyer. If you are injured in a car accident where the driver left the scene, you need to talk to a seasoned attorney to find out what you need to do. An injury lawyer can help you accumulate the necessary information you will need when the offender is apprehended. If the driver is not caught, your attorney will be able to tell you what options you might have. Oftentimes, the injury lawyer using his or her investigative techniques can help find the driver who fled the scene. Call me, Ed Smith, for free, friendly advice at (510) 631-0200 or (800) 404-5400.
My staff and I work hard to get optimal compensation for you or for your family after a wrongful death. You can see what we have accomplished in the past by looking at my former verdicts and settlements. I belong to a forum that only permits members with results of $1 million or more.
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Photo Attribution: https://pixabay.com/en/squad-car-police-lights-city-urban-1209719/