Driver threatened me and tried to assault me before he left the scene...
I was turning out of my development like I have every day for 5 years. I checked both lanes before pulling out. There was a car several hundred yards away - plenty of space to complete my turn safely. But the guy was going 60+ mph in a 35, and wasn't watching the road apparently because he didn't even try to brake.
I should have had ton of space and time to make my turn, but because he was going almost twice the speed limit he was on top of me in seconds.
He slammed into me and totaled my car. Then, as I'm sitting there trying to catch my breath, he jumped out of his car and started threatening me and trying to pull me out of my car to assault me (he couldn't open the door because it was smashed in from the collision).
His girlfriend said, "Baby no you can't fight him here!" She had previously been screaming abusively at me. Then they got into their car and left. As far as I know, he hasn't been caught yet (this was 4 days ago). I'm stuck in insurance limbo, with no car and a bunch of medical bills. How do I proceed? Thank you.
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ANSWER for "Driver threatened me and tried to assault me before he left the scene...":
Jack (Richmond, VA) :
Although your facts don't allude to the presence of police, we will at the very minimum presume you contacted them (or fire and rescue) immediately after the crash, or immediately after the driver fled the scene.
In the State of Virginia, under Section 46.2-894 of Virginia Statutes, "Leaving the Scene of an Accident" can be a felony.
Each driver involved in a car accident where property damage or personal injures were sustained MUST stop as close to the scene of the crash as possible and, if injuries were sustained, contact the police or fire and rescue.
If only property damage was sustained, then the drivers involved in the crash are required to exchange insurance information, contact information, drivers license and registration information. The same information must be exchanged in the event of personal injuries.
Failure to abide by this statute is punishable as a "Class 5 Felony" if any party has been injured, and a Class 1 misdemeanor if a one or more victims sustained property damage in excess of $1,000.00.
Follow up with the police. They should be pursuing the driver for leaving the scene of an accident. Once found, you will have access to his insurance information. In the event he was not insured at the time of the crash, you have a right to sue him personally.
In the event the driver is arrested, contact the assistant prosecutor assigned to the case and ask if the driver is going to receive probation, and that as part of the conditions of his probation he be ordered to pay restitution to you.
If the driver fails to pay the court ordered amounts, his probation can be revoked and he can be sentenced to up to 5 years in the state penitentiary (if the court finds you sustained injuries), or up to 1 year in the county jail (if your property damage exceeded $1,000.00).
The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from an attorney licensed in your state. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call (888) 647-2490.
Best of luck,
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