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Marsha411JD, Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 20299
Experience:  Licensed attorney with 29 yrs. exp. in criminal law
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Someone knowingly causes a wreck. Someone else is injured badly

Customer Question

Someone knowingly causes a wreck. Someone else is injured badly because of the wreck and is left lying on the highway but the person that caused the wreck leaves the scene, goes to that persons home (home of the man lying in the highway) and doesn't tell me what's happened for 10 minutes, THEN starts making comments that lead me to know something is wrong. I go a little over a mile from home looking for the possibly injured person (the one that did the hit and run rode with me and even told me where to go). Once at the scene, EMS had intubated the injuried person. The one that caused the wreck picks the motorcycle up and moves it completely off the highway and then leaves the scene a second time only to have the State Highway Patrol to call a family member to bring him back to the scene and was charged with Felony Hit/Run Injury, Open Container-Driving after consuming alcohol, and Speed Competition. Why wouldn't felony charge change upward due to death & why not 2 Felony Hit and Runs? Serious problems with the DA in that county not handling cases properly. What can I do, as I am the girlfriend of the deceased and was the one that the person came to after causing the wreck and I had to go find the man I love lying there and he died almost 2 hours later in surgery. I live in another county but I also gave evidence (pictures Tim and I took of his motorcycles the day before that we had washed and waxed that showed his bike didn't have any damage before the wreck).
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  Marsha411JD replied 7 years ago.

Without being privy to all the facts and circumstances of the case and the evidence in the possession of the state prosecutor there is no way I can guess why the charges were severed and why, if the injured person died, it is not being charged as manslaughter or involuntary manslaughter. This is a situation where, if you are the victim's family, you should request to discuss the case with the assigned prosecutor in order for them to explain why this is occurring. There can be many reasons for the severance including a judge's action on a motion by defense or even the prosecution. If this person is convicted of the initial charges at the first hearing, then the prosecutor can use that as evidence in the second case and can also use the conviction as aggravation if the defendant is convicted of the second charges. So, as you can see, this is not necessarily a negative decision for the prosecution. As for the charge of felony hit and run versus manslaughter. Again, you'll need confirmation of their rationale from the prosecutor but it may be an issue related to the coroner's statement about the cause of death. Unless the coroner or evidence clearly ties the death to the accident versus medical mistake or underlying health problems, then they might not have enough evidence to support the manslaughter charge. In addition, this may be part of a plea deal. I really can't say. It is important to know that what you might know in your heart that happened and who was at fault is not always as easy to prove from a legal standpoint.

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