Felony and Misdemeanor
Vehicle Code §§’s 20001-20002
The possibility of being charged with a hit and run is not an idea most Californians entertain. While hit and run accidents notoriously conjure up images of criminals fleeing the accident scene in desperation, this is not always the case. While this scenario does occur, if you accidentally hit a parked car in a parking lot and fail to leave a note or report the incident to the authorities, you can be charged with a hit and run.
California Misdemeanor Hit and Run
According to California Vehicle Code 20002VC, if you are involved in a motor vehicle accident that causes damage to another person’s property, you have certain legal responsibilities. You must stop at the accident, give the other party your “identifying information and provide your driver’s license and registration. Failure to do so can result in a California misdemeanor hit and run charge—even if you are not at fault for the accident.
In addition, the CA misdemeanor hit and run law concerns ANY type of property damage. Even if you hit a parking meter, a stop sign or a mailbox, you are legally required to leave your information and notify the California police of the incident.
California Misdemeanor Hit and Run Penalties
- Up to 3 years of probation
- Six months of jail time
- Up to $1,000 fines
- 2 points on your driving record
- Restitution to the victim for property damages
California Felony Hit and Run
According to California Vehicle Code 20001 VC, if you are involved in an accident in which the other party was injured or killed, you are legally required to remain at the scene of the accident and provide reasonable assistance to the injured parties. If you fail to meet these requirements and flee the scene of the accident, you can be charged with a felony hit and run.
Being charged with a California felony hit and run is a much more serious crime and if convicted, it can have severe ramifications both now and in the future. Depending on the severity of the injuries, the number of injured people and your criminal history, you can face long prison sentences and even a conviction of vehicular manslaughter. If you were found to be Driving Under the Influence (DUI) of alcohol or drugs at the time of the accident, you may face additional charges and penalties.
California Felony Hit and Run Penalties
- If the injuries are not permanent, you can face up to 3 years in the California state prison.
- If the hit and run accident caused serious or permanent injuries, or if the accident resulted in another person’s death, you can face up to 4 years imprisonment.
- If you are found to be guilty of vehicular manslaughter, you can face up to 5 years in prison PLUS additional penalties for vehicular manslaughter.
If you are charged with a hit and run in the State of California, it is important to obtain the services of an experienced and aggressive criminal defense attorney. The Law Offices of Michael E. Cindrich APC will fight the charges of a hit and run. If a civil compromise is available, your attorney will fight to have your misdemeanor hit and run charges dismissed completely. If this is your first offense, your CA criminal defense attorney may be able to negotiate lighter penalties without jail time. Even if you are a repeat offender, an aggressive and experienced defense is the best way to avoid lengthy imprisonment and hefty fines.
If you are charged with a felony hit and run or a hit and run associated with a DUI, Michael E. Cindrich will aggressively attack these charges—ensuring the best outcome for your felony case. In many situations, police error, improper search and seizure, or improperly administered blood alcohol content (BAC) tests can weaken the prosecution’s case against you. Mr. Cindrich will investigate all angles of your case to build a strong and formidable defense.
Being charged with a hit and run can be a traumatic and stressful experience. Michael E. Cindrich understands this and is committed to defending your rights—and protecting your future. For more information about California hit and run defense, Contact Michael E. Cindrich right away for a free consultation regarding your felony or misdemeanor hit-and-run case!