A car accident near downtown St. Joseph has led to a police investigation after one of the vehicles involved left the scene of the crash. One person suffered minor injuries in the accident.
Hit-and-Run Car Accident in St. Joseph
The incident happened on Sunday, New Year’s Day, in the middle of the afternoon. Two vehicles, one driving along Dewey Avenue, the other on Chestnut Street, collided in the intersection. The car accident resulted in minor injuries to a 28-year-old woman involved in the crash. No one else was hurt.
However, before police could arrive on the scene of the accident, one of the vehicles took off and sped away. According to initial reports, the person who was driving that vehicle at the time of the accident was actually outside, in the intersection, when it left the scene. Police believe that a passenger in the car jumped behind the wheel and sped off.
Intersection Known for Accidents
The intersection where the crash occurred is known as a tricky one to locals. While cars driving north or south along Dewey Avenue have stop signs, cars travelling east or west along Chestnut do not, creating confusion. The trees in the median along Dewey Avenue make the situation worse, as they can make it difficult for drivers to see other vehicles approaching the intersection. Finally, the intersection is on the crest of a hill, which can hide cars driving westbound on Chestnut down the incline.
Car Crash Shows Importance of Staying on the Scene
After any car accident, it is important to stay on the scene of the crash. Leaving it can not only result in criminal charges for hit-and-run, but can also be used as evidence that you were the one who caused the crash.
Missouri Statute 577.060.1 makes it illegal to leave the scene of an accident, and imposes significant penalties for those who violate it, including up to four years in jail.
However, leaving the scene of a crash can also make it seem like you were the one who caused the accident in the first place. It can be very tempting to leave the scene of a car accident, but if witnesses and other drivers who were involved in the crash give police a good description of your vehicle then you will likely face significant repercussions.
St. Joseph Car Accident Attorneys at the Smith Law Office
A car accident is a stressful event that makes people act impulsively. However, even if you think that you were the one who caused the crash, leaving the scene of the accident is never a wise move. It’s impossible to know in the immediate aftermath of a crash who was responsible for it. The other driver might have been just as liable for the crash as you were.
Staying on the scene to help those involved or get the help you need should be your first priority after a car accident. Only after the dust has settled should you worry about liability. If you think you need a lawyer to protect your interests, reach out to the car accident and personal injury attorneys at the Smith Law Office by contacting us online or at (816) 875-9373.