When an accident occurs, it’s quite common for an individual to panic and leave the scene of the crash without considering the full consequences. In St. Petersburg, being caught leaving the scene of a serious accident could result in a hit-and-run charge. This is considered a serious criminal offense in the State of Florida, and you could expect serious penalties if charged with a hit and run. The penalties would be particularly severe if someone at the scene suffered serious injury or death as a result of the crash.
Even if you leave the scene of the crash simply because of stress or fear, without malicious intent, this can still land you in serious trouble. By law in Florida, if you have been involved in an accident that caused any amount of damage, be it property damage or in the form of injury, you are required to stay at the scene of the accident and exchange your information with other involved parties.
If you are caught leaving the scene of an accident that involved death in St. Petersburg, this could lead to a felony conviction and harsh penalties. Whatever the specifics of your case, if you have been caught leaving the scene of an accident, then we highly recommend that you speak with a St. Petersburg criminal defense attorney as soon as possible.
Here at The Law Place, our team is highly experienced in dealing with cases just like yours, and with over 75 years of combined experience in multiple practice areas, we are in a strong position to give you the best possible outcome for your case.
Why not call us to see how we can help? We offer a no-strings-attached free consultation with one of our criminal defense lawyers. Here you will receive free legal advice specialized for your particular case to give you an idea of the charges you may be facing and whether we could help you to get those charges reduced. We understand how stressful it can be to deal with the force of the law, so let us help you. The sooner you contact us. The sooner we can help you get your life back on track.
Our phone lines are monitored 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call us today at (941) 444-4444.
Florida Law on Leaving the Scene Involving Death
As is stated in Florida Statute 316.062, following a crash that caused property damage, bodily injury, or death, all individuals involved are required to remain at the scene of the accident. It is the duty of those present to exchange details with other involved parties and to seek help where needed. There can be severe penalties for leaving without doing so, as stated under Florida Statute 316.027, where leaving the scene of an accident can, in some cases, result in a felony charge.
If you are a driver who has just been involved in a road accident, your statutory duties are the following:
- You must stop your vehicle as soon as possible, in a safe place as near to the accident as possible.
- You must produce all of the necessary identifying information when asked, including your driver’s license, full name, address, and registration number.
- You must provide ‘reasonable assistance’ if anyone sustained a bodily injury at the scene. This could include carrying the victim or helping arrange for them to be taken to the hospital.
- You must report the accident to a member of law enforcement. In the case that there are no law enforcement officers at the scene, or if the other party is too injured to take your information, then you are required to report the accident to a local St. Petersburg police station.
Penalties for Leaving the Scene of a Car Accident in St. Petersburg, Florida
Leaving the scene of a car accident may seem harmless if you feel that the situation is under control. However, it is important to remember that this is a crime, and an accident involving death could result in a charge as serious as a first-degree felony. This is detailed under Florida Statute 316.027.
In Florida, being charged with a felony in the first degree could mean facing severe charges that could impact you and your family for the rest of your life. If you are convicted, you could be looking at up to 30 years of jail time, up to thirty years of probation, and a fine of up to $10,000, as well as court costs. Furthermore, your driver’s license will be suspended for at least 3 years. It is possible to apply for a hardship driver’s license if you complete an Advanced Driver Improvement Course (ADI).
If a person who has been involved in the accident leaves the scene before swapping personal information and contact details, this will be seen as a hit-and-run offense and could lead to harsh penalties. If the accident resulted in serious bodily injury or death, the penalties would be even more severe. This is why it is essential to have the help of an experienced criminal defense attorney. Our lawyers here at The Law Place have dealt with countless cases just like yours and are very knowledgeable about Florida’s legal system. Allow one of our lawyers to help build a strong criminal defense for you to give you the best chance of a positive outcome for your case. To learn more about the charges you could face and how a criminal defense lawyer could help you, call us today to arrange a free consultation. A defense attorney will provide you with free legal advice so that you can start getting your life back on track.
Possible Defenses for Leaving the Scene of an Accident in St. Petersburg, Florida
If you have left the scene of an accident involving a death, you will most likely require a strong criminal defense in order to reduce or abolish the charges brought against you. Here is where an experienced criminal defense lawyer comes in. With extensive knowledge of Florida’s laws regarding hit-and-run accidents and experience with many other similar cases, a defense attorney will be able to build a strong defense for you to use in court. Some examples of the types of defense that could be relevant include:
- Asserting that the accused driver was wrongly identified.
- Asserting that the driver did not stop or report the incident due to their own personal injuries caused by the accident.
- Asserting that the driver had no choice but to continue driving.
- Asserting that the driver had not been aware that the accident had occurred.
- Asserting that the driver did not realize the extent of the accident and so was unaware that anyone had suffered personal injury or death.
- Asserting that the other party involved in the accident had refused to take the driver’s personal information.
- Asserting that the accused driver had, in fact, given reasonable assistance to the injured person.
- Asserting that the traffic conditions meant that the accused driver stopped as close to the accident as they felt was safe.
- Asserting that the leaving of the scene was with the intention to seek assistance, particularly if directed to do so by the victim.
- Asserting that the victim’s death was the result not of the driver leaving the scene but of a failure of the medical services to arrive in time.
Every case is different, so it is possible that you feel that none of the above situations are relevant to your particular case. Even so, it is worth calling The Law Place today to discuss your options with a criminal defense lawyer. They will give you honest, relevant legal advice that could make all the difference to your future. So call today for no-obligation advice from one of our defense attorneys.
What Can a Criminal Defense Lawyer Do for Me?
The Florida legal system can be confusing and intimidating to navigate, which is why we recommend that you don’t do it alone. We understand how stressful it can be to face the prospect of a first-degree felony charge following a crash. We are here to help make the situation as simple and stress-free as possible for you and will fight hard on your behalf to battle the criminal charges against you. A skilled criminal defense lawyer can take on the prosecution to give you the best chance of reducing the charges and penalties against you or even getting them dropped.
Contact us today to arrange a free consultation to discuss your case. In this initial conversation, you will be advised on the best next steps to take. If you decide to contract our services, one of our criminal defense lawyers in the relevant field will take on your case completely. They will take charge of investigating the circumstances of the accident, collecting relevant evidence, contacting experts where needed, communicating with other involved parties, and contacting witnesses. When it comes to court, your defense attorney will be by your side the whole time, fighting for the best possible outcome for your case. This could include negotiating with the prosecution, attempting to arrange a plea deal, or fighting for the dismissal of your case in court.
We are very upfront and transparent about our legal fees, which we will discuss with you before we start building your defense case. This way, you will know exactly how much the process will cost, with no nasty surprises later on. We also offer payment plans, as we believe that a strong legal defense should be available to everyone. Considering the huge cost of the fines and penalties associated with a felony charge, this expenditure will likely save you a lot of money in the long term.
Contact The Law Place Today
If you are facing charges for leaving the scene of an accident involving a death, you should seek legal defense from a reputable law firm as soon as possible. Whether you believe you are innocent or guilty, research has shown that a strong defense can make a huge difference in the likelihood of a positive outcome for your case.
Here at The Law Place, we have the unique advantage of offering support on both a team and individual level. Following the initial free consultation, if you decide to work with us, we will assign you a defense attorney who will work with you directly. They will also build your defense strategy with the combined knowledge and expertise of the whole team, who will review the circumstances of your particular case and come up with the best possible strategy together. This gives you the advantage of over 75 years of combined experience in this field, as well as direct support from your own assigned defense lawyer who can answer all of your questions throughout.
We believe in mutual trust as well as transparency. But don’t just take our word for it: most of our lawyers have an AVVO rating of 10.0, the highest possible rating, and our firm has received numerous positive reviews from previous clients. This is no doubt a reflection of the dedication we show our clients, whose interests we keep at the forefront in any legal case we take on.
So what are you waiting for? Contact The Law Place today to organize a free case evaluation with a criminal defense lawyer. Their free legal advice could make all the difference to the outcome of your case and the convictions you could receive. A felony charge can easily cause serious and long-lasting negative effects, and we want to prevent that from happening to you.
Our phone lines are monitored 24 hours a day and 7 days a week for the benefit of our clients. So call now at (941) 444-4444 to see how we can help.