Hit and Run Defense
Involved in a hit and run accident? What are my options? Should I return that call to the police or respond to that letter from the CHP? Attorney Matthew Ruff can help individuals accused of leaving the scene of an accident. He can provide answers to your questions and act as your advocate to resolve the situation favorably.
The crime of Hit and Run is committed when a person is involved in a collision and fails to stop and provide information to the other party. A conviction for this offense could result in the loss of the person's drivers license, jail and a fine. A Criminal Defense Lawyer can help to mitigate the damage and work to resolve the situation, sometimes without any criminal prosecution. It is best to retain the services of a lawyer early in the case. When a person buries their head in the sand and hopes that the whole thing will go away but does not hire an attorney, vital opportunities could be lost to work out alternative dispositions such as a civil compromise or other diversionary programs.
In one recent case, Attorney Matthew Ruff was hired shortly after the client was involved in a hit and run collision in Los Angeles County. The client had been drinking and was admittedly DUI at the time of the accident. The client called the Lawyer asking for advice on whether he should report his car stolen the next day, fortunately for him the attorney got involved and was able to guide and direct the client and what to do, and more importantly, what not to do. Falsely reporting your vehicle stolen after a hit and run collision is never the smart or legal thing to do. The client was able to get his car out of impound, the attorney acted as an insulator between the client and the police. At the end of the day, no criminal charges were ever filed.
In yet another recent case, the client retained our services after formal hit and run charges were filed. The Lawyer immediately developed a strategy to get his client's criminal charges dropped. He went to Court and met with the City Attorney prosecuting the case, a deal was struck to dismiss all criminal hit and run allegations in the complaint. In the end, the client never had to go to Court and now has a clean criminal record free from any conviction. Similarly, in early 2009 Matthew Ruff was able to resolve a hit and run case for a client arrested in his home in Long Beach. The police alleged he took off after hitting a parked car in a supermarket parking lot. The attorney took quick steps to arrange a civil compromise with the other party and negotiated a dismissal of the Hit and Run charges in Los Angeles Court in spite of eyewitness testimony of the client's involvement in the collision.
Most recently, the hit and run attorney defended a young lady in Torrance Court for a hit and run involving a DUI in Gardena CA. The client struck a car, drove away and was caught minutes later whereupon she was breathalyzed and blew a .17 BAC. Mr. Ruff took an aggressive approach with the D.A. and obtained a dismissal of all original charges due to extensive investigation and discovery of exculpatory evidence the police left out of the reports. In another recent case, Matthew was hired by a client in Long Beach after he struck two parked cars after a night out. The lawyer got involved early and was able to negotiate a civil resolution to the case, thereby avoiding any criminal prosecution in the matter.
What most people do not understand is that the constitution of both California and the United States allow an individual to remain silent and allow an attorney to speak on their behalf when confronted with questioning from the police or governmental agents. This is important within the context of hit and run cases because what follows a collision where an individual has left the scene is a call from a detective asking probing and very difficult questions about the details of the accident. In addition, insurance company adjusters will want immediate answers as to why and how the car involved in the hit and run caused physical damage and injury. A seasoned attorney with experience in hit and run cases can provide vital legal counsel and be your advocate against the insurance company.
Another type of hit and run charge is when the circumstances involve injury. This offense can be charged as a felony. The injury need not be severe or even require hospitalization. Notwithstanding the seriousness of this class of crime, an experienced criminal attorney can negotiate with the prosecution to reduce the charges or in some cases dismiss it completely. Such was the situation in a recent case handled by Matthew in Torrance Court in September of 2009. The client was accused of DUI with injury (including a high BAC enhancement) and hit and run involving a roll over motor vehicle accident in Manhattan Beach. Despite the egregious nature along with the fact that the client had a prior conviction for DUI, Matthew was able to resolve the allegations by way of a dismissal of the hit and run and a no contest plea to the drunk driving that required no jail time.
A Los Angeles Hit and Run Lawyer can be the most valuable resource you can have after being involved in a hit and run crash. The attorney understands the system, dealing with insurance company representatives, tow companies, police impound yards and detectives from the police agency investigating the accident. The volume of it all can be overwhelming for most people, having a lawyer on your side, acting as your advocate, speaking on your behalf, can make the difference between a good result and a bad one. Our Law Firm is available to meet and confer with you in a discreet consultation.
Call us at 310-527-4100 or Toll free at 1-877-213-4453.
What is apparent is that the key to a favorable outcome in any hit and run criminal investigation is early intervention by an experienced attorney. What we hear from our clients is that they are unsure of the proper steps to take when accused of this type of offense, they have questions about how to deal with insurance claims, what to say to the police officer that calls them and interrogates them about their whereabouts at the time of the collision, and so on. When looking for a hit and run attorney in Los Angeles or Kern County you can turn to the Law Office of Matthew Ruff for the answers you need to make intelligent and informed decisions about your case and future. Do not hesitate when you or someone you love has been accused of hit and run.
The legal information contained in this page is not intended to be specific legal advice on any particular matter. A local experienced criminal defense lawyer should be contacted and consulted if an individual is facing arrest or prosecution in Los Angeles, Santa Clarita Kern County and Bakersfield Ca.