FAIRFAX HIT-AND-RUN DEFENSE LAWYER WILL FIGHT FOR YOUR RIGHTS
You’re in a traffic crash. It wasn’t your fault – the light was green, and you never even saw the other vehicle. You’re late for work already, the damage is minor, and no one seems to be hurt. Do not give in to the temptation to leave the scene. If you do, the police may be looking for you.
Every hit-and-run case is different. No one can be certain how we may react to extreme emotions like panic and fear. The precise circumstances of a hit-and-run mishap, and how you act or react, are crucial elements if you are charged with criminal hit-and-run.
WHAT CONSTITUTES HIT-AND-RUN?
Hit-and-run is a criminal offense in Virginia. More than 4,800 hit-and-run incidents were reported in this state in 2018. Hit-and-run is leaving the scene of an accident without providing your insurance information to the other driver – or assisting anyone who is injured.
Hit-and-run can be a felony or a misdemeanor in Virginia. It’s a misdemeanor if the vehicle damages in the accident is less than $1,000. It’s a felony if the damage value exceeds $1,000 or if the crash resulted in injuries.
Hit-and-run involving a parked vehicle – or any unattended property – is a misdemeanor charge punishable upon conviction with up to a year in jail, a $2,500 fine, and restitution. If the damage in such a case exceeds $500, a six-month driver’s license suspension may also be imposed.
WHAT ARE THE SPECIFICS OF HIT-AND-RUN CHARGES IN VIRGINIA?
Most hit-and-run charges in Virginia will be filed as Class 5 felonies, Class 1 misdemeanors, or Class 4 misdemeanors:
- As a Class 5 felony: A Class 5 felony is charged if a driver leaves the scene of an accident with a vehicle or property that was attended and there was a death, injury, or over $1,000 of property damage. A conviction is punished with up to ten years in prison.
- As a Class 1 misdemeanor: A Class 1 misdemeanor is charged if the vehicle or property was attended and the damage was below $1,000, or if unattended, the damage is valued at $250 to $1,000. The penalty for a Class 1 misdemeanor conviction is up to a year in jail.
- As a Class 4 misdemeanor: A Class 4 misdemeanor is charged if the vehicle or property was unattended and the property damage is valued below $250. Class 4 misdemeanor convictions are punished with fines.
WHAT HAPPENS AFTER A HIT-AND-RUN INCIDENT?
Police agencies in Virginia aggressively investigate hit-and-run incidents. They frequently obtain information from eyewitnesses and video cameras, and they often find the driver they’re looking for.
If you’ve committed a hit-and-run, or if you believe that you will be falsely accused of a hit-and-run, speak to a lawyer before the police speak to you. If you’re arrested and charged with a hit-and-run, answer no questions and politely insist on your right to have your lawyer present for questioning.
Crashes involving occupied vehicles require drivers to stop at once and meet their legal obligations. Drivers must render reasonable assistance to anyone who is injured. Any failure to follow the law is a felony if the crash causes an injury, a death, or more than $1,000 of damage.
IF YOU ARE ACCUSED OF A HIT-AND-RUN
A felony hit-and-run conviction can mean a jail sentence, serious fines, and a driver’s license suspension or revocation. If there were serious injuries, or if alcohol or drugs were involved, a jail sentence is likely upon conviction. It’s a conviction that you very much want to avoid.
However, hit-and-run charges are sometimes difficult to prove because prosecutors often rely on eyewitnesses and circumstantial evidence. The most serious hit-and-run cases frequently go to trial, so having the right defense attorney at your side is imperative.
MEET ATTORNEY SCOTT C. NOLAN
A winning defense against a hit-and-run charge will take the knowledge and skills of a defense lawyer like Scott C. Nolan. With his substantial experience in both traffic law and criminal defense, Scott C. Nolan is the Fairfax hit-and-run defense attorney you can count on.
His extensive background in the Virginia criminal justice system uniquely equips Scott C. Nolan to protect your rights, develop your defense strategy, and fight for the best possible resolution to your hit-and-run case.
If you weren’t aware that an accident happened, if you were confused, or if another driver was the person who left the scene and you’ve been wrongly accused, attorney Scott C. Nolan will make sure that your side of the story is fully told and clearly understood.
To learn more or to schedule a consultation, call Scott C. Nolan’s law offices or contact him online. He’s a trained and experienced Fairfax hit-and-run defense attorney who will fight for justice and bring your hit-and run case to the most positive resolution.