On Monday morning July 14, a 22-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of DUI after striking a 15-year-old pedestrian and fleeing the scene, according to a news article at CBS Los Angeles. The victim, a female, was transported to Western Medical Center in Santa Ana where she is being treated for a skull fracture and is said to be in stable condition.
The alleged hit-and-run driver, Ryota Takamatsu, was arrested and charged with felony DUI and felony hit-and-run after being apprehended.
Police say that the 15-year-old girl was running against a red light in a crosswalk when she was hit by a white SUV. Officers were dispatched to the scene at about 1:30 a.m., and reported that the defendant fled in the 2003 Saturn Vue SUV, sometimes driving with the headlights off in order to elude capture. Another motorist who followed the suspect helped officers locate Takamatsu, who was booked into the Costa Mesa County Jail awaiting transfer to the Orange County Jail in Santa Ana. He was being held on $100,000 bail at the time of news reports.
In the state of Michigan, leaving the scene of an accident (hit-and-run) may be charged as a misdemeanor or felony, depending on whether the accident results in property or vehicle damage, or injury to others and the extent of those injuries. If someone sustains severe bodily injury or death as a result of a hit-and-run accident, the offender may face up to 5 years in prison and substantial fines. Even minor injury to another person may result in up to one year in prison.
In addition, depending on the seriousness of the injuries a victim suffers, someone who is suspected to be driving under the influence may be charged with DUI causing serious bodily injury. If found guilty of this felony offense, an individual may be sentenced to a maximum of 5 years in prison and face fines of up to $5,000. License revocation and possible vehicle forfeiture are other criminal penalties that may be imposed.
Driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs is a serious matter; when an accident results, it becomes even more serious. Whether you have been arrested for a first DUI offense not involving an accident or for drunken driving which resulted in serious injury or even the death of someone else, it is vital that you consult with a highly skilled Michigan DUI lawyer right away. Your attorney will work to minimize the damage and obtain the best possible outcome in your situation.