Q: I hit a parked car the other night and fled. I have prior DUIs. How do get car out of impound and avoid criminal charges
I was driving to get dinner 2 nights ago, I dropped my wallet and reached down to grab it, and I grazed a parked car. Minimal damage to the other vehicle, but my vehicle was disabled. There were no injuries. I had a few beers before I drove, and have prior DUIs. If I received another, I would have had my vehicle automatically seized. My vehicle is currently in impound. Law enforcement attempted to contact me the night of the incident, but I did not respond. What do I do to get my vehicle out of impound and avoid criminal charges? What would happen if I report the vehicle stolen as I don't drive it often and normally wouldn't notice it was missing?
A: This is already a bad situation. Don't compound it by falsely claiming that the vehicle was stolen. That isn't going to make things better and likely could result in additional charges for not only hit & run, but also for falsely reporting a crime. The likelihood of getting out of this unscathed is pretty low. You are most likely looking at charges for failure to to stop/remain at the scene of an accident. That is a misdemeanor. They are not going to be able to charge you with a DWI at this point because there is no test to confirm that you were intoxicated at the time of the accident. Get an attorney on board before dealing with law enforcement and work on getting your car back. You are also like going to be dealing with insurance consequences for this as well.
A: Falsely reporting a car stolen seems like a way to make a bad situation far worse. If a person realizes they hit a parked car, they should stop and leave a note with contact information. If they don't realize it until later, they could face a hit & run - property damage - investigation by police. The owner of the car could go to the impound lot with a valid license and insurance info, and pay to get the car out. If there is a police hold, the owner or their attorney could contact the investigating police officer about getting the car back. However the driver should not discuss the accident with police, at all, since that could be used to charge a crime. Call a criminal defense attorney for help with this.
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