Leaving the Scene of an Accident Conviction Reversed
An Indiana man’s conviction for leaving the scene of an accident was reversed by the Court of Appeals for insufficient evidence. The officer had observed the man’s vehicle in a ditch. Upon turning around to conduct a traffic stop, the officer observed the vehicle parked in a driveway about 50 yards from the accident site. Following an investigation, the man was charged with operating while intoxicated, a Class A misdemeanor; and leaving the scene of an accident, a Class B misdemeanor; and subsequently convicted at trial.
The Court of Appeals reversed the leaving the scene of an accident conviction, finding that the State did not present sufficient evidence to prove that the man had the time to take reasonable steps to locate and notify the owner of the damaged property. Only about five minutes passed between the time the officer saw the man in the ditch and the time he contacted him at the house. The Court of Appeals found that this was not sufficient time for the driver to attempt to locate or notify the owner of the property.
Criminal Attorneys Defending Leaving the Scene of an Accident Charge
If you are charged with leaving the scene of an accident, the State must prove that you operated the vehicle and that you knowingly and intentionally did not attempt to locate or notify the owner of property damage. With offices in Lafayette, Bloomington, Anderson, and Fort Wayne, Gibson Law Office attorneys have experience defending failure to stop and leaving the scene of an accident charges throughout Indiana.