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When is it OK to leave the scene of an accident? And what happens if I do?

By Elsie 12 March 2009 42

I was recently involved in a minor accident (less than $100 damage) but when I gestured for the other driver to pull off the road he jumped out of his car, moved towards me and became aggressive. 

I have been a victim of crime and felt threatened so I drove off but reported the incident to the local police who felt I had behaved correctly. 

The other driver reported a different version of events at a different police station and that officer has now charged me to appear in court. 

I have a perfect driving record without as much as a parking fine.  I have been involved in 2 other accidents, one in which I was at fault and on both occasions I stopped and exchanged details. 

What can I expect and what is the worst that can happen?

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42 Responses to
When is it OK to leave the scene of an accident? And what happens if I do?
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jessieduck 11:39 am 20 Mar 09

simplecon said :

Are you sure you are not being Gangstalked by a group of bullies? It is almost a professional necessity and part of being socially acceptable to be part of a Gangstalking pack in Canberra. Keep a note of registration numbers and being done over for doing nothing particularly “bad” – see if it is a pattern.

Huh?

simplecon 10:57 am 20 Mar 09

Are you sure you are not being Gangstalked by a group of bullies? It is almost a professional necessity and part of being socially acceptable to be part of a Gangstalking pack in Canberra. Keep a note of registration numbers and being done over for doing nothing particularly “bad” – see if it is a pattern.

astrojax 9:16 am 15 Mar 09

print out this thread and present it in court as exhibit a – no judge could convict when the peers agree you’re ok, surely?

unless there is the third side of the event you’re not quite telling us [or, spiceydog, our l’il friend is in pokey by now..?]

Spideydog 3:09 pm 13 Mar 09

Our little friend has not resurfaced to explain or answer some of the questions posed….. I smell a whole lot more to this story ??!!

barking toad 1:41 pm 13 Mar 09

Phone Rickie Nixon – he’ll give you the drum

imarty 10:32 am 13 Mar 09

I had a similar experience a few years ago in Sydney so the procedures, rules etc maybe different. I was involved in a slight bingle where I was not in the wrong. I pulled over (in a safe area!) behind the other vehicle, where upon he jumped out of his car, ran to mine, screaming and banging his fists on my bonnet and approached my door. This was clearly a bloke not in control of his emotions and I felt threatened, he was much bigger than me.
I left the scene. About a week later I was contacted by the cops about this as he had reported it. I went to the local station, explained my version of events, showed the nice police lady the damage to my car, which corroborated my story. She agreed and I never heard anymore about it. Car was repaired under insurance but I can’t remember who paid, it was a company car so didn’t worry me and my no claim bonus was never affected.

hellspice 10:17 am 13 Mar 09

AG Canberra said :

Ask to have it heard by Judge Judy…..

go for the peoples court whith the hottest judge around Marilyn Milian !

RandomGit 10:06 am 13 Mar 09

But anyway, legal advice from a bunch of random gits on an internet forum is hardly a smart move.

No no, these guys are just ‘blow ins’ Random gitness is a whole lifestyle.

Anyhoo, there’s a provision there in the act for bailing on a douchebag. You’ll have to make your case and the loose ends, they shall be tied.

Clown Killer 9:47 am 13 Mar 09

I think Majorca is fantastic this time of year. They will never be able to get you extradicted from there.

Pixie! … More gas.

AG Canberra 9:04 am 13 Mar 09

Ask to have it heard by Judge Judy…..

PBO 8:53 am 13 Mar 09

This sounds a bit iffy, exactly what did he do that was aggressive? And would it be seen as aggressive in the eyes of the law? Did you try to reason with him or were no words exchanged and you just drove off? Were you drinking or under the influence of drugs? Was there any other witnesses? So many variables…..

SadMushroom 8:47 am 13 Mar 09

If they guy approached you aggressively and you drove off, then how do they even know it was you?
Obviously you were both there long enough for him to get your car make and number plate. Then the police usually visit to ask who was driving.
Leaving the scene is only a fine,,they don’t even make you go to court.

I too beleive there is more that is not being told.

Represent yourself in court, IF the facts as you’ve given them are the whole story. Save the $$$ you would have spent on a lawyer. According to the facts as you’ve given them, there’s no way a conviction would stand up or be recorded.

Trouble is, actual facts are kinda thin according to what’s been posted here, and certainly aren’t the whole story.

YapYapYap 10:55 pm 12 Mar 09

Talk to your insurer.

Piratemonkey 10:23 pm 12 Mar 09

Couldn’t you just go have a chat to legal aid?

Say here is what happened what do I do? I have a feeling they might agree with TAD. If their are no witnesses either way or some one on your side id say you’ll be fine. You do need professional advice tho. Legal aid will be able too tell you who to write too and what to say, or to get a lawyer.

I-filed 9:50 pm 12 Mar 09

Represent yourself in court, IF the facts as you’ve given them are the whole story. Save the $$$ you would have spent on a lawyer. According to the facts as you’ve given them, there’s no way a conviction would stand up or be recorded. Why don’t you contact the Victims of Crime support unit and get some advice from them? They’re located at the Court.

It’s understandable that the police who heard the other side may have assumed you left to avoid being tested for alcohol or whatever. Once you’ve given your statement of facts (and an outline of your state of fear) they are likely to withdraw the charge altogether, particularly if no-one was injured during the accident and the damage was $100. That seems an extraordinarily low amount by the way. Is that for painting a small scratch? Must be!

bigred 9:47 pm 12 Mar 09

My advice is that you sit down and write your notes about what happened without further dealy. Then, talk to friends at work etc (as well as here) about who might be a good lawyer for traffic matters. I have been told Mark Fleming is the best in town for traffic matters. Do not delay any more.

Deckard 9:34 pm 12 Mar 09

If you don’t get off maybe you’d be able to write us a review of what it’s like on the inside of the new jail 😉

On second thoughts it might not be open – in that case how about an article on the overcrowding in the Belconnen remand centre??

I reckon you need legal advice. Simply suggesting that the other driver ‘became aggressive’ is very vague, and really doesn’t mean anything? Did the other driver actually threaten you, raise their voice, etc?

What happened leading up to the accident? Did you tailgate, cut the other driver off, make a rude gesture? People don’t generally go mental over minor traffic accidents.

Also, who caused the accident? Were you doing something silly when it happened? Texting, talking on mobile, etc? I think there are a lot of people who post here that probably could help you, but more details are needed.

bd84 9:19 pm 12 Mar 09

Well the only “legal” occasion to leave the scene of an accident is after you have exchanged details. Though you haven’t really defined how the other was being “aggressive” one would think that an imminent threat of danger or violence would be the only occasion to drive off (which I don’t really see in the info provided there). It would be handy if you had a witness to the accident, otherwise get a lawyer and see what they can do for you.

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