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  1. #1
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    Feb 2020
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    Default Rear Ended and I and Other Driver Received Negligent Driving Second Deg Wa State

    My question involves a traffic ticket from the state of: Washington

    I was in an accident involving a another car that rear ended me on Hwy 16 in Kitsap County, Washington State. Only witnesses were me alone in my car and he and his presumed to be wife. He slammed on his brakes several times before the accident when I was behind him. I honked the horn at him for about 20 seconds two separate times. He then sped off tailgating other cars all the way until he was out of sight. I then ended up catching up to him a few minutes later and passed him on a 2 lane highway road with a 60 mph posted speed limit. We were both going between 60-65 mph. He flipped me off several times throughout this incident. He got right up on the butt end of the car in the left lane that was in front of him because he saw me approaching in the right lane. I ended up passing him and moving into the left lane in front of him. He got behind me and I tried to keep him behind me by staying in front of him, as a result we both were changing lanes fast, but he was swerving all over the place. I was tapping my brakes just like he had done to me and was staying in front of him as he was tailgating me so close I couldn't even see the hood of his car in my rearview mirror. He ended up running into my back left bumper (he was driving a Mazda 3) and we both slowed down and pulled over, and got out of our cars. He came aggressively up to me while I stood by my right front tire as I said "Hey, what are you doin man?" He got right in my face and started jawing at me but backed off fairly quickly. His wife had her cellphone out at some point and was videoing us. Then we called the cops and got in our respective cars and waited for the cops to show up. The cop ended up giving me a citation for Negligent Driving 2nd Degree and said he cited him as well.

    I'm wondering how I got cited when he ran into me, I always thought if you got hit from behind it is the other drivers fault. I asked the cop this and he said based on witness statements I'm citing you both and you both are at fault.

    I want to go to court to contest this but I'm not sure if it's worth it or not. I'm going to file a claim with my insurance company for my crunched back left rear bumper, but I'm concerned about insurance rates and the ticket cost is $553. I'm debating whether or not I should hire a lawyer.

    Any advice would be appreciated on who is at fault when I got rear ended, even if I was purposely changing lanes to not let him by. I don't see how I'm at fault, I was even slightly concerned what he might do when he got back in front of me.

    Anybody got any advice for me?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
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    19,498

    Default Re: Rear Ended and I and Other Driver Received Negligent Driving Second Deg Wa State

    This is Washington State. You need to request a CONTESTED hearing and then subpoena the officer's sworn statement which will be the evidence against you. Post it here (redact personal information). The experts will tell you if there are holes in the state's case.

    Understand that there is NO EXCUSE for speeding. You'll not win that. The answer to tailgaters is to smoothly decrease your speed. You will then either allow him to pass or at least the energy in the resultant wreck is minimized.

    You can guarantee that unless something exceptional happens and the other driver's insurance pays out for your damage that your insurer will charge the accident to you and almost certainly increase your rates.

  3. #3
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    Mar 2013
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    Default Re: Rear Ended and I and Other Driver Received Negligent Driving Second Deg Wa State

    Quote Quoting RedJetta
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    I was purposely changing lanes to not let him by.
    That's why you got cited.

    The smart move would have been to leave him be.

    The dumb move is what you did.

  4. #4
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    Feb 2020
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    Default Re: Rear Ended and I and Other Driver Received Negligent Driving Second Deg Wa State

    flyingron: Thank you for your quick reply I will post more information for the experts when I get the officers sworn statement. Just want to mention I was not charged with speeding and was barely going over 60 mph in a 60 mph zone, and because I had started braking I think I was most likely going slower than 60 mph. Also we both have the same insurance company Progressive, I don't know if this is relevant information or not.

    Thanks.


    adjusterjack: I agree it was not the wisest decision doing what I did, but I was kind of agitated with this guy. I'm fine with being called dumb, and it's probably justified, but would it be worth it to contest it since he hit me from behind?

  5. #5
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    Sep 2010
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    Default Re: Rear Ended and I and Other Driver Received Negligent Driving Second Deg Wa State

    Again, you're free to contest it, but nothing you said here means much in court. Again, REQUEST DISCOVERY and let's see what the state's case is.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Rear Ended and I and Other Driver Received Negligent Driving Second Deg Wa State

    Quote Quoting RedJetta
    View Post


    adjusterjack: I agree it was not the wisest decision doing what I did, but I was kind of agitated with this guy.
    I get agitated with other drivers every day. You know what I do? I back off and let them move on. My manhood doesn't require that I engage in road rage when I am slighted on the road.

    I can imagine your thought process. "That SOB isn't going to get away with doing that to ME. I'll show him."



    Quote Quoting RedJetta
    View Post


    would it be worth it to contest it since he hit me from behind?
    The officer referred to witnesses to your behavior. Engage in discovery and get his report. If the report names witnesses other than the other driver or his occupants, and those witnesses come to court, then you lose.

    If they don't come to court then anything the officer says about witness statement is hearsay and inadmissible. You might skate.

    No guarantees.

    You decide.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
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    Default Re: Rear Ended and I and Other Driver Received Negligent Driving Second Deg Wa State

    Alas, anything the defendant says IS admissible, and I bet he incriminated himself.

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