In California, those involved in accidents must stop after the incident. Continuing to drive may lead to a hit and run charge. The type of charges depends on whether property damage or bodily injury occurred. Vehicle Code 20002 (VC 20002) classifies a hit and run with only property damage as a misdemeanor. But, having a misdemeanor charge does not mean that you don’t need legal help. Getting legal guidance from a qualified defense attorney can provide you with support as you move through the legal system.
What Is a Hit and Run with Property Damage?
The charge of a hit and run with property damage, per VC 20002, involves a vehicular accident that causes some type of damage to property, whether the other vehicle or nearby property. For a conviction of this type of charge, prosecutors must prove that you did the following:
- Were in a vehicular accident
- Did not provide contact information and render aid, if necessary, before leaving the scene
This type of charge may also occur even if you were not in the car. Per VC 20002 (b), if your car was parked, rolled away, and struck another vehicle, or damaged property, you still need to stop and provide contact information or risk a hit and run charge.
What Are Possible Punishments for a Hit and Run Charge Under VC 20002?
A conviction under VC 20002 is a misdemeanor, as long as there were no injuries or fatalities. This type of charge comes with a maximum punishment of county jail time of no more than six months, a fine up to $1000, or both jail time and a fine.
How a Defense Attorney Can Help
A defense attorney can help, especially if one of the most common defenses applies to your case. These defenses that show you did not commit a hit and run with property damage include the following:
- You did not leave the scene
- You were falsely accused of the crime
- Stopping was unsafe at the time
Always tell your defense attorney everything that happened to provide them with the information necessary to ensure that you get the best legal advice possible for your case.
Contact the Law Office of Steven K. Bloom to Not Go Through the Legal System Alone
If you have a charge of a hit and run with property damage, you should get expert advice on what to do next. Connect with the Law Office of Steven K. Bloom to find out more. You deserve to have the best defense possible, no matter the legal charges against you. With Steven K. Bloom, you get an Orange County defense attorney who will work hard for you.