Just before 5:00 a.m. on Saturday morning, police received a call about an unresponsive man in the road in Lincoln Square. Now, police believe the man was the victim of a hit-run-driver. The victim’s injuries were so severe that he died at the scene.
The incident occurred in the 2100 block of West Wilson Avenue on the city’s far north side. Police stated that no driver was present on the scene when they arrived to explain the incident and the man was unresponsive before he died. An autopsy on Sunday confirmed that victim died as a result of multiple injuries sustained in a collision with a car but at this time, it is not clear the type of car or who was driving at the time of the crash.
In Illinois, leaving the scene of an automobile accident that results in death or serious bodily injury is a felony charge, meaning that in addition to having a driver’s license revoked and fines imposed, anyone found guilty of the offense can face serious time in prison. The laws are very harsh because when an uninjured person leaves the scene and leaves another behind who is too hurt to call for help, the authorities may not be alerted and that victim may die while awaiting needed medical care.
In addition to a charge for leaving the scene of an accident, a driver that causes a fatal crash might face traffic offenses brought by the State of Illinois. Often, these include failing to reduce speed to avoid a collision, failing to yield the right of way, and failing to exercise due care for others. Sometimes, multiple charges are treated as separate offenses for sentencing purposes meaning that a driver may face even greater time behind bars or an even greater financial fine.
If the threat of criminal and traffic prosecution weren’t enough, offenders who leave the scene of an accident may also face civil claims for the injuries they inflict on others. These claims can include assertions for medical bills and treatment as well as time missed from work. Where a victim is killed, a claim can still be brought by the victim’s surviving family members and can be made for the losses they suffer, which is massive.
With all that is placed at stake, it may be surprising that hit-and-run crashes are relatively common in both Chicago and Illinois. Some drivers flee after an accident because they do not have valid insurance or a driver’s license. Others are under the influence of drugs or alcohol and get scared of the charges they will face. Still other drivers just get scared and take off because they are afraid of what they’ve done. Regardless of the reason, there is never a valid excuse to leave the scene of an accident and leave victims behind to suffer.
If you have been involved in a hit-and-run accident, you may have a claim for your damages. Many accident victims are unaware that they have a valid claim even if the at-fault driver is never found. When a driver is found, a claim can be brought against that driver personally or his insurance company for your loss and your suffering. When the at-fault driver is never found, you can still have a claim against your own insurance company. The majority of Illinois motorists carry a type of insurance that protects them in the case of a hit-and-run crash and that will provide financial compensation in the event of an accident that causes injury.
If you have been the victim of an automobile accident, call the Chicago hit-and-run lawyers at Abels & Annes, P.C. today and let us provide you with a free case consultation. We are standing by 24 hours a day to take your call at (312) 924-7575 or toll free at (855) 529-2442. At Abels & Annes, there is never a fee unless we make a recovery on your behalf. Let us put our decades worth of experience behind your claim so that we may obtain the highest possible award in your case.
Prior Blog Entries:
Fatal South Side Chicago Hit-And-Run Leads to Arrest, Chicago Car Accident Lawyers Blog, published August 1, 2013.
Driver Runs Stop Sign, Injures 4 Before Fleeing the Scene, Chicago Car Accident Lawyers Blog, published July 29, 2013.
Man Killed In Hit-And-Run Crash In Lincoln Square, CBS Chicago/Sun-Times Media Wire, published August 3, 2013.