Hit and Run Accidents: Scranton Criminal Defense Lawyers
Picture this: It’s a late spring NEPA rainstorm. The fog is so thick, you can barely see in front of you as the rain pelts your windshield. While driving through town, you feel your car hit a bump. You try to see what’s in front of you but it appears to be just a pothole. That is until you see the damage at the bottom of your front bumper including the paint of another vehicle. You tapped the back of a parked car, but you didn’t stop.
Hit and run accidents are not just colliding with pedestrians on busy streets. Sometimes, it’s parking lot collisions or a scrape on a narrow one-way street. While sometimes there will be no harm no foul, in those instances where there is damage, or worse, injury, you need to come prepared with a legal defense. These accidents can cost you big, so let the Scranton criminal defense lawyers at Mazzoni Karam Petorak & Valvano help you through the hit and run legal process.
What is a hit and run accident?
A hit and run accident is a traffic offense that involves an individual who creates or is otherwise involved with a vehicular accident and illegally leaves the scene of the crime. Under the law, you must stay present at the scene or, if the individual involved is not there, you must leave a note or other form of communication for the individual to contact you.
Under Pennsylvania law, the following are types of hit and run accidents in Pennsylvania:
- Hit and run without injury: If no one is injured, the charge is a third-degree degree misdemeanor.
- Hit and run with minor injuries: Charged as a first-degree misdemeanor.
- Hit and run with serious bodily injury: Potential to be charged as a third-degree felony and face a minimum prison sentence of 90 days and a minimum fine of $1,000.
- Fatal hit and run: May face one to 10 years in prison. Classified as a second-degree felony, it carries fines of up to $2,500.
The nature of the damage and the reason the incident occurred will ultimately determine the penalties faced.
Defenses to Hit and Run Cases
It may seem like there is no way out of a hit and run charge. Depending on the circumstances, an experienced Scranton criminal defense lawyer will be able to negate the accusations to give you the most desirable outcome.
Potential defenses to a hit-and-run accident charge include the following:
- You remained at the scene of the crime
- Someone else drove your vehicle away
- You were not the individual involved
- You were involved in an emergency and were on your way to the hospital or other emergency facility
- You did not know that you struck another object, person, car, etc.
The elements of a hit and run case make it difficult to defend simply because evidence can disappear quickly. However, the experienced Scranton criminal defense lawyers of Mazzoni Karam Petorak & Valvano can help.
Hit and Run Accidents: MKPV Scranton Criminal Defense Lawyers
Accidents happen. But when they do, make sure you have a strong legal team to protect you throughout the process. At Mazzoni Karam Petorak & Valvano, we’ve been helping residents of Scranton and surrounding communities in their toughest legal fights and we are ready to help you take on yours.
Contact the Scranton criminal defense lawyers at Mazzoni Karam Petorak & Valvano today.