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DUI » DUI Accidents » Hit & Run (Leaving the Scene)

Hit and Run: Leaving the Scene of a DUI Accident

Leaving the scene of an accident, often referred to as "hit and run," is a criminal offense that involves intentionally leaving or fleeing the scene of an auto accident without exchanging driver and insurance information with the other party or parties involved. A driver may be charged with leaving the scene of the accident as a separate criminal offense or may face criminal charges of this kind in conjunction with DUI charges. If the driver is also accused of leaving the scene of the accident which is deemed to be DUI manslaughter, he or she may face first degree felony charges and penalties of up to 30 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $10,000.

For the prosecution to prove guilt, they will need to prove the following factors beyond a reasonable doubt:

  • The defendant was driving the vehicle;
  • The defendant had an unlawful BAC and / or were impaired by alcohol or a controlled substance;
  • The defendant caused the auto accident;
  • The defendant knew or should have reasonably known that the accident occurred; and
  • The defendant intentionally left the scene of the accident without rendering aid or exchanging information.

Arrested for a DUI hit and run? Contact a Tampa lawyer today!

When polled, only half of respondents stated they would leave their information behind if in an accident that caused damage to another car. Another study showed that out of the top five most dangerous cities for hit and runs injuring pedestrians, four of them included Florida cities: Orlando, Tampa, Miami and Jacksonville. These are serious facts with serious implications as statistics have shown that every year, over 100,000 people are injured by hit and runs and over a thousand are killed. This leads to severe penalties for those who are criminally charged. In fact, many people attribute DUI hit and runs to these severe penalties.

If an accident occurs, instincts may lead the defendant to panic and flee, hoping to outrun the accident. This is even truer for people who are driving without a license as studies have shown that they are six times as likely to flee the scene of an accident. If you find yourself in a case such as this, it may seem that the odds are stacked against you. You, however, are not without hope! You have the right to an attorney and should not hesitate to exercise it. By getting the involvement of an experienced lawyer, you will better be able to protect your legal rights, building a defense that can help with an acquittal or reduction in penalties.

Contact a Tampa DUI attorney at our firm today to find out how we can help you.

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