On a recent Saturday in November, a man was injured in a hit-and-run accident while crossing an intersection in Reno after that night’s Nevada football game. The injured pedestrian was sent to the hospital in critical condition. Though safety has apparently improved at that intersection, adding a crosswalk and installing flashing lights, this marks almost to the day the second accident that has occurred at that location in five years. Both times, the drivers fled the scene. As did the first man five years ago, the victim of this second accident has since died from his injuries so this may be considered a case of vehicular manslaughter.
Though the incident was classified a hit-and-run, police do have someone in custody. A 26-year-old turned himself in several hours after the crash. Allegedly, he felt guilt after seeing the news media highlights on television and wanted to do what he felt was the right thing. While officials believe drugs or alcohol may have been contributing factors in the accident, they were unable to perform the necessary tests, as the driver turned himself in after the two-hour DUI window had closed.
Accordingly, the man will not be charged with driving under the influence. He already faces charges of felony hit-and run, driving without a license and failing to yield to a pedestrian. However, since the victim has died, the man could possibly face charges of vehicular manslaughter as well, according to an officer with the Reno Police Department.
Most likely, Nevada defense counsel will use the fact that the accused man turned himself in as part of his defense. Whether facing DUI charges or manslaughter charges, defendants involved in criminal cases benefit from the legal counsel of attorneys with experience in criminal law. Skilled defense counsel can work with the accused to pursue a verdict of “not guilty,” or can otherwise help mitigate the negative effects of any charges, work toward a less severe sentence or advise defendants on a negotiated plea bargain.
Source: mynews4.com, “Hit-and-run crash sheds light on growing problem of pedestrian deaths in Nevada“, Olivia DeGennaro, Nov. 14, 2016