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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    6

    Default Hit and Run After Drinking With Damage to Vehicle, No Injuries

    My question involves criminal law for the state of: Michigan.

    My husband was driving home tonight and hit a vehicle on the side of the expressway which was abandoned. By his account his vehicle is totaled. No other people were in the car (his or the other vehicle) and no one was injured.

    He freaked out and ran for two reasons

    1) His insurance lapsed
    2) He had been drinking

    Please respond with helpful posts. We need help for now so we can deal with this and do what needs to be done.

    I went to pick him up. I sort of saw the vehicles and I think both are totaled and both are very very old.

    My questions are

    1) What do we do now?
    2) Do we turn him in when morning comes?
    3) Can we just say he freaked out because he didn't have insurance?
    4) What is going to happen when he turns himself in? Will he be arrested? He has to work he is the only one working right now after I've been laid off and I'm pregnant.
    5) Should we wait to turn him in until speaking with a lawyer on Monday morning?

    We obviously need to take care of this and the police will know it was his vehicle registered to him anyway since he left the vehicle.

    Can they charge him with a DUI if they couldn't do a breathalizer?

    I'm so scared, he is very scared.

    He has never ever ever done this before. He just made a very stupid mistake that could have been so much worse. Thankfully, it wasn't and he knows this... now. Unfortunately that is too late to keep this from happening so now we have to deal with it and he needs to face the consequences.

    Please help!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    9,096

    Default Re: Hit and Run After Drinking With Damage to Vehicle, No Injuries

    1) What do we do now?
    Wait for the police to show up... assuming that your husband's car is properly licensed and registered, it will just be until someone notices.

    2) Do we turn him in when morning comes?
    Wouldn't do that without an attorney,... but certainly one way to go.

    3) Can we just say he freaked out because he didn't have insurance?
    You could. No one will believe you, but you could.

    4) What is going to happen when he turns himself in? Will he be arrested? He has to work he is the only one working right now after I've been laid off and I'm pregnant.
    He committed felony hit and run. That is not a small thing.

    Further, he will also be responsible for the repair costs of the other vehicle out of pocket - in a civil sense. Though that won't mean much.

    Your husband really won't receive much sympathy from the court. If you are too broke to have car insurance, you should have been too broke to be out drinking.

    5) Should we wait to turn him in until speaking with a lawyer on Monday morning?
    No matter what you choose, I don't think you will get the opportunity to wait that long.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    6

    Default Re: Hit and Run After Drinking With Damage to Vehicle, No Injuries

    Thank you for your response.

    Everything I can find says that in our state (no injuries) this is a misdomeaner. Can someone direct me to where it is a felony? This is what I foudn is this true? http://www.legislature.mi.gov/(S(tnr...me=mcl-257-618
    (1) The driver of a vehicle who knows or who has reason to believe that he has been involved in an accident upon public or private property that is open to travel by the public shall immediately stop his or her vehicle at the scene of the accident and shall remain there until the requirements of section 619 are fulfilled or immediately report the accident to the nearest or most convenient police agency or officer to fulfill the requirements of section 619(a) and (b) if there is a reasonable and honest belief that remaining at the scene will result in further harm. The stop shall be made without obstructing traffic more than is necessary.


    (2) If an individual violates the requirements of subsection (1) and the accident results in damage to a vehicle operated by or attended by any individual, the individual is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment for not more than 90 days or a fine of not more than $100.00, or both.
    Also, Michigan is a no-fault-state.... I keep finding that means unless the other party has full coverage the only the we are responsible for is the $500 mini-tort law. I may be mistaken. That is as far as the other vehicle is concerned. It is doubtful there was full coverage on the other vehicle it looked pretty old to me from what I could see. I can't find the link again... not that he should be absolved of his responsibility. I'm just trying to find out what exactly that is.

    How can they prove he was drinking?

    I'm well aware he shouldn't have been out doing this. He made a terrible mistake and I hope we can fix it now.

    when they come to our door are they going to arrest him?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    15

    Default Re: Hit and Run After Drinking With Damage to Vehicle, No Injuries

    So wait, you abandoned his car on the side of the road? Just curious.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: Hit and Run After Drinking With Damage to Vehicle, No Injuries

    I would like to add an experience about a close friend of mine. She had just lost a cousin who committed suicide and was in an incredibly emotional and devastated place. She ended up drinking a bottle of wine by herself and decided to go to her cousin’s mother’s house who stayed across town. Well she is a lightweight when it comes to alcohol and ended up hitting another car that was pulling out from their parking spot. She freaked out and drove away. Best thing she could have done IMHO. The people who were hit didn’t follow her but got her plate number. Police ended up showing up at her ex-husbands door later that evening, who stayed many cities away, since the registration was still under the old address.

    This gave her time to sober up and so driving while drinking never came up as an issue. If she had of stopped, it would have been all bad. I gave her a earful when I saw her and her car almost right after it happened.

    She told her insurance agent the next day that the reason why she fled was because she just got scared and that’s the reason why she took off. No one but she and I knew she had been drinking. Timing is everything…

    Time can be on your side in certain DUI hit and run instances. I think your husband’s mistake was leaving his car at the scene.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    15

    Default Re: Hit and Run After Drinking With Damage to Vehicle, No Injuries

    I think your husband’s mistake was leaving his car at the scene.
    I couldn't agree more.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    CT & IL
    Posts
    5,273

    Default Re: Hit and Run After Drinking With Damage to Vehicle, No Injuries

    Quote Quoting janellelk
    View Post
    I couldn't agree more.
    Maybe this could seen as "leaving a note"?

    Your husband should see an attny. I think that the husbands worst judgment was driving after drinking...driving by touch eh?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    6

    Default Re: Hit and Run After Drinking With Damage to Vehicle, No Injuries

    Yes, he left his vehicle. Believe me it was NOT drivable.

    He received two tickets and one warning. One for wreckless driving, one for leaving the scene. Leaving the scene is a court ticket, wreckless driving is a pay it ticket. He got a warning for no proof of insurance. These tickets came in the mail after taking him to the police station and getting the run around and not really being able to turn him in properly. Then the state police are not open at all hours and the investigating officer works closed hours we were never able to get ahold of the investigating officer. The investigating officer mailed the tickets. It was really a mess trying to get him turned in and getting to this point. Several days after the tickets came a court summons came for the leaving the scene ticket. What will happen is he will plea and then have fines and it will be over thankfully.

    Court is later this month. I'll try to remember to update what happens.

    Lesson is learned here, sorry it had to be learned, but, it is. He won't be ever doing this again. Thankfully there weren't truly tragic circumstances here.

    Thank you for all the help and the stories it really helps.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Behind a Desk
    Posts
    98,846

    Default Re: Hit and Run After Drinking With Damage to Vehicle, No Injuries

    This, of course, is why a lot of drunk drivers take off from the accident scene - so that they can sober up before the police catch up with them.

    If by reckless driving you mean MCL 257.626, that's a crime. Yes, there are some circumstances when you can plead by mail and pay a fine to resolve a traffic misdemeanor, but if you're already hiring a lawyer for the "leaving the scene" ticket have him handle the reckless driving as well.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    6

    Default Re: Hit and Run After Drinking With Damage to Vehicle, No Injuries

    We won't likely be hiring a lawyer. If we get there and discover one is needed we will do what needs to be done then. Court date is for arraignment only. Although, I've seen it all happen in one day if the defendent is pleading guilty. We'll see. We've been advised we most likely won't need one. That what will happen is he'll plead guilty and get a fine all in one day and it will be over (except for points on his DL) and we can move on.

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