EXPERT CRIMINAL DEFENSE LAWYER FOR HIT AND RUN
David Pflaum is a skilled criminal defense lawyer with over 25 years experience who protects the rights of clients charged with hit and run and gets the best possible results for them in court.
A violation of hit and run may arise when there is an accident and the driver fails to stop at the scene to identify himself of herself, or to leave a note on the damaged property.
A hit and run accusation may be a felony or a misdemeanor and therefore is referred to as a “wobbler” offense.
If there were no injuries during the course of an alleged case of hit and run, the case will be likely be a misdemeanor violation of Vehicle Code section 20002.
If someone was injured during the course of the alleged hit and run, the case will likely be a felony violation of Vehicle Code section 20001.
HOW THE DEFENSE LAWYER HELPS IF A CLIENT IS IN CUSTODY
Get Out of Jail: If the client is in jail for a hit and run, there are several ways attorney Pflaum helps him or her get released before or during the first court date.
Click on the word “released” above for more information about how the lawyer gets his client out of jail as soon as possible.
HOW AN EXPERIENCED DEFENSE LAWYER HELPS HIS CLIENT
There are many ways an experienced defense lawyer helps his client.
Every case is different. Each client is unique.
An experienced criminal defense attorney like Mr. Pflaum learns everything he can about the client in order to apply the right strategy to get the best possible results. Some of the most important areas about the client are the following.
- Present employment
- Past employment
- Military experience
- Religious affiliations
- Character references
- Mental health
- Physical health
- Certificates of expertise
- Educational background
- Prior criminal record
Positive information about the client is helpful in resolving the case with the prosecutor and the judge during the court process.
Police Investigation: If the police or a detective want to speak to you about an accusation of a hit and run, call the defense attorney right away to protect your rights. A skilled defense lawyer can prevent an arrest and avoid prosecution in court.
Contact the Prosecutor’s Office: Depending upon the circumstances, such as assistance from the alleged victim, interviews with witnesses, and additional facts about the arrest, the defense lawyer gets vital information about the case as soon as possible.
The lawyer then delivers the most important information to the prosecutor’s office as soon as possible with the goal of persuading the prosecutor’s office not to file any criminal charges against the arrested person, or to reduce the charges.
If a charge of hit and run is filed in court, Mr. Pflaum is ready to lead the way.
After analyzing the case and reviewing the arrest reports, witness statements, and any other evidence that the police claim supports the charges, Mr. Pflaum appears in court to protect the rights of his client.
Plea Bargain: The first step in a criminal case is to reach a plea bargain since more than 95% of criminal cases are resolved this way.
A plea bargain is an agreement between the client, the defense attorney, the prosecutor and the judge to resolve the case before trial. The main goal is to eliminate or reduce the charges, avoid time in jail or provide alternatives to custody, reduce the fines, and provide other favorable terms.
It is also important to reach a plea bargain that keeps the client’s record clean.
HOW THE DEFENSE LAWYER GETS THE BEST POSSIBLE PLEA BARGAIN
Defense Strengths: Good plea bargains come about because the criminal defense attorney knows his client well, investigates the case, carefully reviews the police reports, the medical records, fingerprints, videos, photographs, tape recordings, 911 calls, forensic evidence, witness interviews, and everything else associated with the case to develop the strengths of a case.
Prosecution Weaknesses: By the same process the criminal defense attorney develops weaknesses in the prosecutor’s case such as inconsistencies in witness statements, problems with the arrest or the investigation, discrepancies in the conduct of the investigating officers, missing or inconclusive evidence, and problems in the forensic evidence.
Effective Presentation: The criminal defense attorney then makes a persuasive presentation to the judge and prosecutor about the strengths of his client’s case, and weaknesses of the prosecution’s case, to achieve an excellent plea bargain for his client.
If the plea bargain offer is accepted by the client and his defense attorney, the case then goes to the next court date for sentencing.
If the plea bargain is not accepted, then the client and the defense attorney continue to aggressively defend the case as it heads towards a trial.
Jury Trial: For cases that cannot be, or should not be, settled by way of a plea bargain, attorney Pflaum is ready to prepare for and go to jury trial and get the best results possible for his client.
DEFENSES FOR HIT AND RUN
Defenses at trial depend upon the facts of the case. The most common defenses are the following.
- No criminal intent
- No corroboration
- No knowledge of an accident
- Insufficiency of the evidence
- Bias of the witness
- Failure to identify the defendant
- Improper police investigation
- Failure to advise the client of his/her rights
WHAT TO DO IF YOU ARE CHARGED WITH HIT AND RUN
There are many ways to defend a misdemeanor or felony hit and run charge depending upon the circumstances of the accident and the type of damages to the other vehicle or person.
It is helpful to know whether the person accused of committing the hit and run has insurance, his or her driving and criminal record, and what the victim of the hit and run has to say about the incident.
The best thing to do if you believe that you are, or will be, charged with a violation of hit and run is to immediately contact the experienced defense attorney to represent your interests.
MORE ABOUT THE APPLICABLE LAW
If you are involved in a car accident while driving a vehicle, California Vehicle Code sections 20001 and 20002 require a driver to provide a driver’s license and vehicle registration to the other driver.
If the other driver cannot be found, then you should write down on a piece of paper your driver’s license number and vehicle registration number, along with a description of how the accident occurred, and leave this information on the windshield of other vehicle. Then you are also supposed to call the local police and report the accident.
Some people do not follow the requirements of CVC 20001 or 20002, in which case a misdemeanor or felony criminal charge of hit-and-run may be the result and the police may come looking for them.
The maximum sentence for a misdemeanor hit-and-run is a fine of $1000 plus penalty assessments and up to 6 months in jail. The maximum penalty for a felony hit and run is a fine and up to 3 years in prison.
Click on investigations and results to learn more about the attorney’s ability to resolve these types of charges very favorably.
Call the right defender for help with your case
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