Two high-profile cases in Oregon involving hit-and-run accidents have recently been resolved in criminal court. A man in Medford Oregon, Othon Campos, Jr., was sentenced to three years for striking three adolescents in late August. According to a story in Medford’s Mail-Tribune, one of the children, an 11-year-old girl, was sent to Portland with the most severe of the injuries, including permanent brain damage and a broken pelvis. Campos was on his way to the store to get more beer. He fixed the truck in which the accident happened and hid out for almost two weeks before police found and arrested him.
In a Portland hit-and-run accident that received statewide coverage, Ashley Chavez struck a pedestrian after leaving a Portland Timbers game in March. Chavez, her passenger, and other accomplices covered the accident up. She was sentenced to 6 years and 3 months in prison.
In both of these cases, the at-fault drivers were tried in criminal court for violating Oregon law regarding the proper procedure that drivers must follow after an accident. ORS 811.705 require drivers involved in an accident where another person is injured to stop immediately, to stay at the scene until released, to give their insurance information to the other party in the accident, to provide assistance in getting medical help, and to cooperate with authorities on the scene.
In a hit-and-run accident, an at-fault driver who is eventually found, as Campos and Chavez were, faces not only criminal charges but also insurance liability for the accident. In that case, injured parties or victims’ survivors can file a claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance company. If a driver is not found or is uninsured, an injured person can file a claim with their own insurance company, since Oregon requires all drivers to have Uninsured Motorist coverage in their policies. Uninsured Motorist coverage can pay up to $25,000 .
If you are involved in a hit-and-run accident resulting in injury to yourself or a loved one and need the representation of a personal injury lawyer, one of the experienced auto accident injury attorneys at Dwyer Williams Dretke can help you fight your claim.