I Committed A Hit And Run: How Long Will It Take For The Police To Find Me?

I Committed A Hit And Run How Long Will It Take For The Police To Find Me

If I committed a hit-and-run, how long will it take for the police to find me? 

In this article, you’ll learn about: 

  • how long it takes for the police to find you
  • what evidence they will gather against you
  • what charges you’re facing
  • the penalties for committing a hit and run
  • things that affect how long it takes the police to find you

Let’s dig in. 

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If I Committed A Hit And Run, How Long Will It Take For The Police To Find Me?

It can take a few months for the police to find you after committing a hit-and-run. 

Here are things that affect how long it will take the police to find you:

  1. Availability Of Evidence: The presence of clear and substantial evidence, such as surveillance footage, witness statements, or physical evidence (i.e., vehicle debris or your license plate), can significantly speed up the investigation process. The time required to collect and analyze this evidence can range from a few days to several weeks.
  2. The Severity Of The Incident: The police prioritize more severe cases, such as those involving serious injuries, fatalities, or extensive property damage. In such cases, the investigation might be expedited, potentially taking a few weeks to a few months.
  3. Investigative Resources: The availability of law enforcement resources, such as personnel and technology, can influence the speed of the investigation. In areas with well-funded and well-staffed police departments, investigations might progress more rapidly. Additionally, the workload of the department at the time of the incident can impact the time it takes to assign resources to the case.
  4. Cross-Referencing Databases And Surveillance Footage: Investigators may need to cross-reference various databases, such as vehicle registration, insurance, or traffic camera systems, to identify potential suspects. The time required to obtain and analyze this information can vary widely depending on the complexity of the case and the accessibility of the data.
  5. The Cooperation Of Witnesses And Suspects: The willingness of witnesses to come forward and provide statements can greatly affect the investigation timeline. Similarly, if a suspect is identified and they cooperate with law enforcement, the process can be expedited. This aspect of the investigation is highly variable and can range from a few days to several months.

Hit And Run Charges

A hit and run can be classified as either a misdemeanor or a felony.

Your hit-and-run charges depend on:

  • the state you live in 
  • the circumstances of the case

A hit-and-run is a misdemeanor when it involves property damage only.

Hit-and-run felonies are likely when the incident results in bodily injury or death. 

The specific classification can vary from one jurisdiction to another.

And some states may have additional factors to consider.

Read More: Will Cops Come To Your House For A Hit And Run?

Factors that Determine Hit And Run Charges

A hit-and-run charge will either be a felony or a misdemeanor. 

Here is how the penalty for hit and run gets classified:

  1. The severity of the accident: The extent of the damage caused by the accident plays a crucial role in determining the classification. Accidents with minor property damage are more likely to be considered misdemeanors, while those with significant property damage or involving multiple vehicles can lead to felony charges.
  2. Injuries sustained: If you committed a hit-and-run incident that results in bodily injury or death, it is more likely to be a vehicular manslaughter felony. The severity of the injuries can further impact the classification and penalties, with more serious injuries leading to harsher consequences.
  3. Prior convictions: Your criminal history, especially previous hit-and-run convictions or other traffic offenses, can influence your hit-and-run charges.

Penalty For A Hit And Run

The penalties for a hit-and-run can include:

Fines For Committing A Hit And Run

Fines for a hit-and-run can range significantly depending on:

  • the jurisdiction 
  • the severity of the incident

Misdemeanor charges typically result in lower fines

Felony charges can lead to much higher fines. 

The fines can range from:

  • a few hundred dollars for minor property damage 
  • to tens of thousands of dollars in cases involving severe injuries or fatalities

Imprisonment For Committing A Hit And Run

Let’s say you’ve committed a hit-and-run. 

The amount of jail time you’ll get depends on:

  • whether you get a misdemeanor or felony
  • the severity of the accident

For misdemeanors, jail time may range from a few days to a year.

Felony convictions can last from a year to several years.

(Or even decades in the most severe cases.)

Read More: What To Do If You Hit A Parked Car But There’s No Damage

License Suspension

You can lose your license temporarily or permanently. 

It depends on:

  • the severity of the accident
  • your driving history

To get your license back after committing a hit-and-run, you’ll have to:

  • complete a traffic safety course
  • meet other requirements (i.e., community service or paying fines)

the offender may be required to complete a traffic safety course or meet other requirements before their license is reinstated.

Civil Liability

When you commit a hit and run, you may be personally liable for:

  • damages (i.e., property damages, punitive damages, etc.)
  • losses (i.e., medical expenses, lost wages, wrongful death, etc.)

Things Affecting How Long It Will Take The Police To Find You

If you commit a hit-and-run, here’s what affects how long it will take for the police to find you. 

Availability of Evidence

A crucial factor in a hit-and-run investigation is the availability of evidence

The more evidence available, the higher the chances of solving the case. 

Some types of evidence that can be vital in an investigation include:

  • Surveillance Footage: Cameras from traffic lights, nearby businesses, or homes capture footage of the accident, providing essential information like the vehicle’s make, model, color, license plate number, and driver’s appearance.
  • Witness Statements: Witnesses who saw the accident offer valuable information to the police, such as descriptions of the vehicle, driver, or direction the vehicle fled. The more witnesses and consistent statements, the better the chances of identifying the responsible party.
  • Physical Evidence: Debris from the accident scene (e.g., broken car parts, paint transfer) helps investigators determine the type of vehicle involved, and other physical evidence like tire marks provides clues about the accident’s circumstances.

The Severity Of The Accident

The severity of the hit-and-run incident can also impact the investigation. 

Law enforcement agencies typically prioritize more severe cases involving:

  • serious injuries
  • fatalities
  • extensive property damage

As a result, these cases may be resolved more quickly than incidents with minor damage or no injuries.

Investigative Resources

The investigation’s speed and outcome can be affected by the available resources. 

Well-funded police departments may have more resources for hit-and-run cases.

This will speed up the time it takes the police to find you after a hit-and-run. 

But, if they are busy with other cases, it might take longer to solve the hit-and-run.

FAQs About How Long It Takes Police To Find You After A Hit And Run

Here are some other questions we get on the topic.

Will Cops Come To Your House For A Hit And Run?

Yes, the police may come to your house for a hit and run investigation.

They might have evidence leading to your house such as:

  • surveillance footage
  • witness statements
  • vehicle debris

Always cooperate with law enforcement during their inquiries.

How To Get Out Of A Hit And Run Charge?

To get out of a hit-and-run charge, you should immediately consult with an experienced attorney.

They will:

  • evaluate your case
  • identify potential defenses
  • advise you on the best course of action

They may:

  • challenge the evidence
  • argue for a lesser charge
  • negotiate a plea deal on your behalf

How Long After A Hit And Run Accident Can You Be Charged

For misdemeanor hit and runs, you can get charged for up to 3 years. 

For felony hit and runs, you can get charged for up to 7 years. 

The time frame for charging someone after a hit and run:

  • varies by state 
  • depends on the statute of limitations

What Evidence Is Needed To Convict A Hit And Run?

To convict a hit and run, evidence may include:

  • surveillance footage
  • witness statements
  • physical evidence (e.g., debris, paint transfer)
  • vehicle damage
  • suspect admission

A combination of these can help establish the suspect’s:

  • involvement in the incident 
  • their failure to stop/report

Minimize Your Hit-And-Run Charges

If you are facing a conviction of hit and run, fill out the form on this page.

Our criminal defense attorneys have the experience you need to defend your rights.

This way, you don’t:

  • get wrongfully convicted of criminal homicide
  • spend decades in jail needlessly
  • never see your family or loved ones again
  • get wrongfully accused of a serious crime by police officers

You deserve a fair trial in the criminal justice system.

We can provide you with that.

Talk soon.

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