Leaving the scene of an accident is more commonly known as a “hit and run” offense, and alleged offenders will be aggressively prosecuted. Under Texas Transportation Code § 550.023, motor vehicle operators have a duty to give information and render aid. The law requires the operator of a vehicle involved in an accident resulting in the injury or death of a person or damage to another vehicle to give their name and address, the registration number of the vehicle they were driving, and the name of the operator’s motor vehicle liability insurer to any person injured or the operator or occupant of or person attending a vehicle involved in the collision.

They must also display their driver’s license when requested and provide any person injured in the accident reasonable assistance, including transporting or making arrangements for transporting the person to a physician or hospital for medical treatment when it is apparent that treatment is necessary, or if the injured person requests transportation. Similar duties for striking unattended vehicles and structures, fixtures, or highway landscaping are established under Texas Transportation Code § 550.024 and Texas Transportation Code § 550.025, respectively.

Leaving the Scene of an Accident Main

Fort Worth Leaving the Scene of an Accident Lawyer

Were you or your loved one recently arrested for allegedly leaving the scene of an accident in Tarrant County? You should not say anything to authorities until you have legal representation, contact the Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy.

Our firm can fight to possibly get your criminal charges reduced or dismissed. You can have us discuss all of your legal options when you call (817) 422-5350 or contact us online to take advantage of a consultation.

Leaving the Scene of an Accident Charges in Fort Worth

If the damage to all vehicles is less than $200, violations of Texas Transportation Code § 550.024 and Texas Transportation Code § 550.025 are both classified as Class C misdemeanors. An offense becomes a Class B misdemeanor when damage is $200 or more.

Under Texas Transportation Code § 550.021, the operator of a vehicle involved in an accident that results or is reasonably likely to result in injury to or death of a person is required to:

  • immediately stop the vehicle at the scene of the accident or as close to the scene as possible;
  • immediately return to the scene of the accident if the vehicle is not stopped at the scene of the accident;
  • immediately determine whether a person is involved in the accident and if a person is involved the accident, whether that person requires aid; and
  • remain at the scene of the accident until the operator complies with the requirements of Texas Transportation Code § 550.023.
 

When an accident results in serious bodily injury to any person, the individual who does not stop or comply with the requirements of state law will be charged with a third-degree felony. An offense resulting in death is a second-degree felony.

Texas Transportation Code § 550.023 establishes that the operator of a vehicle involved in an accident resulting only in damage to a vehicle that is driven or attended by a person must:

  • immediately stop the vehicle at the scene of the accident or as close as possible to the scene of the accident without obstructing traffic more than is necessary;
  • immediately return to the scene of the accident if the vehicle is not stopped at the scene of the accident;  and
  • remain at the scene of the accident until the operator complies with the requirements of Texas Transportation Code § 550.023.
 

It is a Class C misdemeanor when an alleged offender does not stop or does not comply with these requirements and the damage to all vehicles is less than $200. It is a Class B misdemeanor when the damage to all vehicles is $200 or more.

Leaving the Scene of an Accident Penalties in Texas

Under Texas Transportation Code § 550.021(c)(2), a conviction for leaving the scene of an accident resulting in injury not classified as serious bodily injury or death is punishable by imprisonment in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice for up to five years of confinement in the county jail for up to one year and/or a fine of up to $5,000. All other cases could involve the following penalties:

  • Class C Misdemeanor — Fine of up to $500
  • Class B Misdemeanor — Up to 180 days in jail and/or a fine of up to $2,000.
  • Third-Degree Felony — Up to 10 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $10,000.
  • Second-Degree Felony — Up to 20 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $10,000.
 

Suspension of a driver’s license is another possible consequence of leaving the scene of an accident conviction. People who receive four moving violations within 12 months or seven moving violations within 24 months will be classified as habitual traffic violators whose licenses are suspended for 90 days.

Leaving the Scene of an Accident Defenses in Tarrant County

An alleged offender may not have been the person driving at the time of an accident. Certain cases may involve shared automobiles in which the actual offender was another person with access to the vehicle involved in a crash.

When a person is facing felony charges because of an alleged serious bodily injury, it may be wise to question whether the injury really constitutes such. Under Texas Penal Code § 1.07(46), a serious bodily injury is defined as “bodily injury that creates a substantial risk of death or that causes death, serious permanent disfigurement, or protracted loss or impairment of the function of any bodily member or organ.”

Leaving the Scene of an Accident Resources in Tarrant County

Transportation Data | Tarrant County, Texas — Accident data pertaining to vehicular accidents on roadways maintained by Tarrant County is provided by the Tarrant County Sheriffs Department. The data set is updated regularly and provides general information regarding traffic accidents. Requests for specific information of a legal nature should be directed the Sheriff’s Department at 817-884-3700.

Crash Information | North Central Texas Council of Governments — Tarrant County is one of 16 counties served by this voluntary association of, by and for local governments. The North Central Texas Council of Governments includes over 230 member governments, and you can use this website to access information about Tarrant County bicycle and pedestrian crash locations and density, bicycle and pedestrian crash density, bicycle crash locations, and pedestrian crash locations. Crash data from 2013-to 2017 can also be viewed on Google Earth.

Find A Tarrant County Defense Attorney for Leaving the Scene of an Accident | Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy

If you or your loved one were arrested for allegedly leaving the scene of an accident in Fort Worth or a surrounding area of Tarrant County, you are going to want to get yourself, legal counsel, right away. Contact the Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy as soon as possible.

We will work tirelessly to help you achieve the most favorable possible outcome for your case. Call (817) 422-5350 or contact us online to set up a consultation.

0/5 (0 Reviews)