The only thing more stressful than a run-of-the-mill car accident is one where the at-fault party leaves the scene without providing any information. Sometimes, these hit and run accidents can have devastating consequences and involve significant property damage or injury to the party that was hit. When this takes place, hit and run accidents can often be extremely dangerous—especially when the at-fault party fails to help someone who was hurt at the scene and may need medical attention.
According to a recent news report, a Newark police officer was charged with reckless vehicular homicide after he struck a pedestrian with his personal vehicle and took the body home, where he consulted with his mother about what to do with it. The officer was off duty when his car slid into the shoulder of the road and struck the pedestrian. Neither the officer nor his passenger in the car contacted local police or provided aid to the pedestrian. Instead, the officer drove away and returned to the scene several times before placing the pedestrian’s body into his car and driving it home to his parents’ house. According to prosecutors, the officer and his passenger then discussed what to do with the body with the officer’s mother.
Eventually, the officer’s father called the police to report that his son had been in an accident. When local authorities arrived, they found the pedestrian’s body in the backseat of the officer’s vehicle. The prosecutor’s office noted that the pedestrian had died of blunt force trauma.
In Maryland, like many other states, there are specific laws governing hit and run accidents. Hit and run accidents take place when the at-fault party of an accident causes a collision, fails to stop, and flees the scene before providing their information to the affected parties.
Under Maryland law, leaving the scene of an accident resulting in serious bodily injury is a felony punishable by up to five years in prison. At-fault parties who flee the scene could also receive a fine of up to $5,000. In the event that the hit and run accident results in the death of another party, it could carry a maximum penalty of ten years in prison and a $10,000 fine.
In the event that you are involved in a major car accident, ensuring that the at-fault party follows these steps is crucial. First, the at-fault party should always stop and pull their vehicle to the side of the road to a safe location that is as close to the scene of the accident as possible. Next, if someone involved in the accident is injured, it is the at-fault party’s responsibility to get help right away. Once medical attention has been accounted for, calling the police can establish all the details with an official record. Finally, it is crucial that the at-fault party exchanges all pertinent personal information with the other involved parties, such as driver’s license and insurance information.
Do You Need a Maryland Car Accident Lawyer?
If you or someone you know was recently injured or killed in a Maryland hit and run accident, contact the attorneys at Lebowitz & Mzhen today. Our lawyers have years of experience representing clients in all types of personal injury claims and will provide you with the support you need to navigate your claim with ease. To schedule a free initial consultation, contact us at 800-654-1949.