West Palm Beach hit and run arrests can lead to severe consequences that require proper legal representation. You may quickly find yourself overwhelmed by an aggressive and complex legal system.
Fortunately, help is available. Our dedicated attorneys at Leifert & Leifert can work to get you the best possible case result if you are facing hit and run charges.
The Duties of a West Palm Driver After an Accident
The duties you must fulfill to avoid arrest for leaving the scene in West Palm Beach are laid out under state law. Florida Statues 316.062 explains that any motorist involved in a crash causing damage to another person, vehicle, or property of any person must promptly stop their vehicle at the crash scene, or as near as possible, remain there, and provide appropriate medical assistance when necessary.
Even in instances where it is dangerous or impossible to remain directly at the crash site, a driver involved in the incident must immediately return to the scene. Failure to meet these requirements will lead to a subsequent investigation and arrests if you are suspected and subsequently charged for leaving the scene.
What Happens After A Hit and Run Incident?
If eyewitness accounts cannot provide a license plate number, police will turn to other sources of potential identification, such as video surveillance. Because police officers in West Palm Beach tend to use the license plate number to locate the suspect’s vehicle, the vehicle’s owner can easily be misidentified and arrested as a hit and run suspect, even if they were not the driver.
Police may also visit you in your home or send letters through the mail. If the hit and run only results in minor property damage, law enforcement will most likely send a notification within seven days of the accident, at which point any statements you make to the police will be used as evidence.
Lastly, you should expect an arrest warrant if the accident results in death or serious bodily injury. Depending on the classification of the charge, your potential penalties following a hit and run arrest can vary.
Penalties for Leaving the Scene of a West Palm Beach Traffic Accident
In West Palm Beach, a hit and run arrest can lead to either a misdemeanor or a felony. Fleeing the scene of an automobile accident after causing property damage is a second-degree misdemeanor with consequences such as a jail sentence of up to 60 days and a $500 fine.
Leaving the scene after causing injury, a third-degree felony, is punishable by a maximum of five years imprisonment and $5,000 in fines. Finally, leaving the scene of an accident after it has resulted in death is a first-degree felony resulting in 30 years imprisonment $10,000 fines.
Get Help After an Arrest for Leaving the Scene in West Palm Beach
There are many reasons that drivers flee the scene of an accident. The uncertainty and potential consequences can overwhelm you in the heat of the moment and cause a lapse in judgment. You may have been unaware that any harm, damage, or collision even occurred.
You cannot turn back time, but you can take legal steps to protect your rights and your future. Contacting an experienced Leifert & Leifert attorney after West Palm Beach hit and run arrests can help give you the best chance at a positive outcome in your case. Call our office today to set up a free case consultation.