South Carolina has seen its fair share of hit-and-run accidents over the years. In fact, there have been over 900 of them in just the last five years alone. In total, 69 people have died in such collisions. The sad truth about these accidents is that the drivers are not always at fault, but by leaving the scene they create serious legal trouble for themselves. Thankfully, an experienced criminal defense attorney may be able to help.
The South Carolina Highway Patrol is currently in the process of investigating two hit-and-run incidents that occurred in the last two weeks. While many of these collisions result from distracted or impaired driving, others simply are accidents where the drivers flee due to driving on suspended licenses or simply because they are scared. Leaving the scene of an accident can have severe consequences, though.
According to state laws, the penalties for hit-and-run incidents range from misdemeanor to felony charges, with 30 days to 25 years in jail or prison, and fines of $100 to $25,000. It all depends of the circumstances surrounding the event and if the victim suffered any injuries or death. The consequences for leaving the scene are typically more severe than they would be if one remained on site and cooperated with police.
Hitting a person or another vehicle unintentionally is, no doubt, a scary thing to experience. No matter why it happens, one will only help him or herself by staying at the scene, rendering aid if needed and calling for help. If one is facing a hit-and-run charge, however, a criminal defense attorney can help in fighting one's case in a South Carolina criminal court. With help, one can do all that is necessary to achieve the best outcome possible.
Source: wltx.com, "Consequences of Hit-And-Run Accidents", Kayla Binette, June 27, 2017