What is a hit and run in Louisiana? Would I be in trouble for not calling the police?
Stop Vehicle + Give Identity + Render Aid
After being involved in an accident, a motorist must do three things to avoid criminal liability: (1) He must stop his vehicle at the scene of the accident, (2) give his identity, and (3) render reasonable aid. This list stems from a Louisiana 3rd circuit case called State v. Davenport, decided in 2006. State v. Davenport, 941 So. 2d 629, 631 (La. Cit. App. 3d Cir. 2006).
5th circuit cases State v. Agee and State v. Boudreaux go so far as to say that a motorist must report the accident to the police or risk being charged with hit and run. State v. Agee, 534 So. 2d 483 (La. Ct. App. 5th Cir. 1988); State v. Boudreaux, 484 So. 2d 160 (La. Ct. App. 5th Cir. 1986.)
Even if you don't have impact, there may still be a hit and run.
One interpretation that makes defense of hit and run difficult is the 2004 Louisiana Supreme Court case, State v. Williams, which found that it is not necessary that there be contact between the defendant's vehicle and another vehicle or another person. A driver can cause an accident by driving negligently or recklessly. In the Williams case, the driver crossed the center line of a highway, causing another motorist to swerve and crash into a following 18-wheeler truck which resulted in the motorist's death. He was convicted of hit and run even though he called the police to report the accident because he did not stop at the scene (he drove to a nearby house), did not give his identity to the dispatcher, and did not render reasonable aid to the victim. State v. Williams, 893 S0.2d 7, 9-10 (La. 2004).
La. R.S. 14:100
Ultimately, the current code article for Hit-and-run driving is La. R.S. 14:100, stating: Hit and run driving is the intentional failure of the driver of a vehicle involved in or causing any accident, to stop such vehicle at the scene of the accident (incident/event resulting in damage to property or injury to person), to give his identity (name, address, license no. of vehicle) and to render reasonable aid.
The sentence for hit and run with no death and not related to alcohol is fine of no more than $500 or imprisonment for not more than six (6) months or both. When there is no death but there is evidence that the operator consumed alcohol or drugs, there is still $500 fine/ six (6) mos. max jail, but ALSO a minimum of ten (10) days in jail.
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