Hit-and-run accidents are sadly common in Michigan, and they often leave injured parties wondering what steps to take in the aftermath. Because of this, those who are caught after fleeing an accident may face severe consequences.
A recent post from MLive.com discusses a woman who found herself involved in a hit-and-run incident. The 48-year-old lady, Patricia L. Allen, recently pled guilty to three charges. Ms. Allen appeared at Bay County District Court and pled guilty to counts of failure to report an accident, driving with a license suspended, denied, or revoked, and the failure to stop at a personal injury accident. Ms. Allen pled guilty to the three misdemeanors in order to avoid the possibility of going to trial, where she may have had to face charges for a failure to stop at an accident resulting in serious bodily impairment or death. A conviction for such a charge could have carried a sentence of five years of prison; the dropped charge was also a felony. Ms. Allen appeared at the court on August 12, although the incident that led to criminal charges during a collision occurred on March 5.
Ms. Allen allegedly struck Sherry Laberge, a 64-year old woman in a Chevrolet truck. Mrs. Laberge stated that when Ms. Allen struck her truck, she had been driving at approximately 25 miles per hour, while estimating that Ms. Allen had been driving around 70 miles per hour. Mrs. Laberge stated that after the car accident, a lady approached the vehicle to ask if everyone was okay. When Mrs. Laberge stated that she needed to call for an ambulance so that they could check on her injured husband, the Ms. Allen returned to her car and drove away from the scene of the accident. Afterward, an anonymous person called the police to report that Ms. Allen was the woman who had fled the scene of the accident. When the police arrived at her home, they discovered a damaged 2000 Pontiac Grand Am. The police issued Ms. Allen citations for driving without a license, failure to report an accident, and failure to stop at the scene of an accident. Mr. and Mrs. Labarge allegedly suffered whiplash as a result of the accident.
What should I do if I am involved in a traffic accident?
It was correct of Mrs. Labarge to call the ambulance directly after the accident. Even if there is no injury when you are in a car accident, the first step should always be to call law enforcement. It is also imperative that you obtain the contact information of as many witnesses as possible and descriptions of vehicles and license plates. In the aforementioned traffic accident, the Laberges and Ms. Allen had two different explanations regarding the accident. Unsurprisingly, each party asserted that the other party was responsible. Testimony from eyewitnesses, as well as a police report from the crash, can help you claim immensely. Additionally, if you sustained even minor injuries in the crash, rather than wait to see if the pain dissipates it is in your primary interest to see a doctor as soon as possible so that the injuries do not worsen.
If you are in a car accident and live in the state of Michigan, please contact the Clark Law Office. We can help you file a claim in order to recover due compensation for the injuries that you sustained.