A six year veteran of the Phoenix Police Department was killed in the line of duty on Sunday morning when he was stuck by a hit-and-run driver. The officer was on the scene to handle another incident with a driver who was allegedly under the influence of drugs or alcohol when the officer was hit by a green Ford Expedition. The driver of the Expedition fled the scene and the officer later died of his injuries.
The officer, an Iraqi War veteran, is survived by his wife and one child.
Police officers investigating the incident later found the Expedition but they have not yet determined who was driving the vehicle at the time of the fatal crash. Anyone with information related to the collision or the driver of the Ford Expedition is asked to call the Phoenix Police Department or Silent Witness where callers can remain anonymous if they choose.
The law in Arizona requires anyone involved in a motor vehicle accident to stay on the scene until responders arrive. This is to provide police and any other drivers with personal information as well as to make sure that anyone injured gets the medical care they need. Unfortunately many Phoenix drivers do not follow the law and leave the scene of an accident that they cause which puts the other drivers involved at risk.
In this case, the vehicle that caused the fatal accident was later found, meaning that charges may be filed against the driver or the owner of that car related to the collision and for leaving the scene of the accident, depending on what the evidence reveals. Identifying the person who caused an accident also means that a civil suit for damages can be brought against that individual.
In many hit-and-run crashes, the other vehicle and its driver cannot be identified. Often the only witness is the driver who remains at the scene and it can be difficult for a car accident victim to be certain of all details of the crash, including the make and model of the other vehicle as well as a description of the driver. Injuries can also prevent a victim from identifying the other vehicle.
If the other driver that causes a collision cannot be identified, it is still possible to bring a claim for injuries sustained in a crash. Most automobile insurance policies have something called uninsured motorist coverage which provides an avenue for recovery when a driver is injured by a hit-and-run motorist. In a claim for uninsured motorist benefits, a driver’s own insurance company steps into the shoes of the insurance company for the unknown, at-fault driver and provides coverage for the collision.
An uninsured motorist claim can cover the same types of losses as a claim against an at-fault driver, including expenses for medical bills incurred, lost wages, and any other damages suffered by a driver.
If you have been injured by a hit-and-run driver, you may have a claim for your injuries, whether or not the driver was eventually located after the crash. Contact the Phoenix hit and run injury attorneys at Abels & Annes, P.C. today to learn about your rights and to find out if you have a claim. We provide a free, no obligation consultation to victims of auto accidents over the phone and can be reached toll free at (855) PHX-LAWYER. Alternatively, please call us locally at (602) 819-5191 and let us go to work for you.
Prior Blog Entries:
Second Child in Two Months Drowns in Valley Pool Accessed by Doggie Door, Phoenix Injury Lawyer Blog, published May 17, 2013.
Ride of Silence Hits Valley in Remembrance of Bicyclists, Phoenix Injury Lawyer Blog, published May 15, 2013.
Phoenix PD officer killed in hit-and-run collision, vehicle found, KTAR.com, published May 19, 2013.