Ask a cop: Handling a "Hit and Run" C...

Ask a cop: Handling a "Hit and Run" Collision

There are 10 comments on the Whittier Daily News story from Jun 8, 2009, titled Ask a cop: Handling a "Hit and Run" Collision. In it, Whittier Daily News reports that:

As a traffic investigator for the Whittier Police Department, the majority of my cases involve "Hit and Run" collisions.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Whittier Daily News.

christopher

Whittier, CA

#1 Jun 8, 2009
As an ex police officer, and a current firefighter, I would also like to remind people: When you are involved in an accident, take care of your safety first. Often you will see cars involved in an accident stopped in traffic lanes, with the occupants exchanging information, within inches of fast moving traffic. If you are involved in an accident move the vehicles out of traffic if it possible. If not possible, the occupants should move to a safe location to exchange information, and wait for police and the tow trucks where safe. The responding officers do not need the vehicles left in traffic to make an accurate report. Please think about your safety first. remove yourselves to a safe location, tend to injuries, do not be concerned who's fault it is. That is the insurance company's responsibility.
Victim Hit and Run

Whittier, CA

#2 Jun 8, 2009
I was recently rear ended on the freeway by a hit and run driver. I was driving about 40 miles and the other driver was in the next lane to my right going a bit faster. The traffic in the lane in front of the other driver slowed down causing him to make a unsafe lane change into my lane which caused him to hit the left side of my back bumper with great force. I sustained neck and shoulder pain. I thought the other driiver was going to pull over to the shoulder of the freeway, but instead he bolted for the next exit. I pursued him to get his license plate, but he started to pick up speed and get away, I was about two car length behind him but as he exited the freeway he got caught behind a vehicle at the stop sign. I was able to get part of his license plate so I continued to follow to get the full of plate ,which I was able to get before he through a bottle at my car as he fled away . I know if I was involved in another hit and run accident I would follow the individual as long as it is safe. I am glad I did follow this individual I was able to give the CHP the license plate and vehicle description and with a thorough investigatiion the individual was caught. He was driving with a suspended license.
Whittier1

AOL

#3 Jun 9, 2009
I can almost bet he was a illegal mexican who has nothing but alot of time on his hands. We should set up check points in the daytime and catch more unlicensed and uninsured drivers, most of those caught would be housewives, husbands, blue collared workers who have slid into the system illegally.
Whittier2

Santa Ana, CA

#4 Jun 9, 2009
Whittier1, do you hate all Mexicans, or Hispanics, in general or just the illegal ones??
Whittier

Whittier, CA

#5 Jun 9, 2009
christopher wrote:
As an ex police officer, and a current firefighter, I would also like to remind people: When you are involved in an accident, take care of your safety first. Often you will see cars involved in an accident stopped in traffic lanes, with the occupants exchanging information, within inches of fast moving traffic. If you are involved in an accident move the vehicles out of traffic if it possible. If not possible, the occupants should move to a safe location to exchange information, and wait for police and the tow trucks where safe. The responding officers do not need the vehicles left in traffic to make an accurate report. Please think about your safety first. remove yourselves to a safe location, tend to injuries, do not be concerned who's fault it is. That is the insurance company's responsibility.
So true, if you are not injured and your vehicle is driveable, than you should move to the side of the shoulder or road to exchange info. I see it all the time people are in the middle highway surveying the damage and exchanging info while cars are having to swerve to avoid hitting them.
Whittier

Whittier, CA

#6 Jun 9, 2009
Whittier1 wrote:
I can almost bet he was a illegal mexican who has nothing but alot of time on his hands. We should set up check points in the daytime and catch more unlicensed and uninsured drivers, most of those caught would be housewives, husbands, blue collared workers who have slid into the system illegally.
Hit in run come in all sizes, shapes and colors. Why do we have to assume it a certain race? I think there should be stricter laws for people who hit and run. Most of the time hit and run drivers are repeated offenders and run because they either have no license, driving with a suspended license or have no insurance.
Claire

West Hollywood, CA

#7 Jun 15, 2009
I was t-boned on the driver side by a very large SUV. It happened on a very busy street. The driver followed me into the parking lot and as soon as I got out of my car, they took off. It was a brand new car so there wasn't a license plate. I was able to get some good information about the paper plates from a witness and I am having the security manager of the parking lot checking their 360 degree camera of the parking lot that the person sped through to get away. I will find out tomorrow if the tape goes back as far as 3 days. I sure do hope so. I feel like if I can get the dealer paper plates to be confirmed like the witness told me (he wasn't positive) then it should be easier to find this person. Considering it had just been purchased and the car is not a very common one. I'm just hoping that the investigator will work with me on this. I can't let this person get away. They destroyed my car, I didn't have collision coverage so I am SOL if we don't find them. I am also thankful to be alive. This person was driving a very large vehicle and hit my car pretty hard.

Any tips? Just in case there is something I haven't covered. Also, what is your take on this? Do investigators really look into these cases or do they just go into a pile of papers?

Thanks!
whittier

Whittier, CA

#8 Jun 15, 2009
You would think it a new vehicle they would stop and exchange info, but I guess it doesn't matter people tend to flee because of whatever resons. It sucks when someone hits you and doesn't even bother to check if the person is okay. I hope they find the person responsible for hitting you. I would keep checking with the investigator or police department where you filed your report. I am sure the person can probally be located from the dealership through the info you gave on the vehicle description and paper plate. Good Luck.
Claire

West Hollywood, CA

#9 Jun 16, 2009
I found out today that the entire accident is on the tape. I am picking up the copy tomorrow. However, the guy told me that you can't really tell any details other than the type of car and color it is. I have found some other clues going off of what the witness told me that i'll be looking for when i review the tape myself. After that, I will get in touch with the investigator on the case. Hopefully he will take into the consideration all of the work I went through to get the evidence that I did.

The security guy was saying that there is software out there that could zoom in closer to the car's plates. Is this true? Do the police have this? Would they use it? Is it true they can zoom in to see the VIN number even?

I sure hope so! Oh my gosh, I'm so close to solving this!
Claire

West Hollywood, CA

#10 Jun 16, 2009
And I'm sure they took off because they were on drugs or something. Doesn't make any sense that they would take off otherwise.

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