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My son, loaned his truck to a friend. The...

Resolved • Response time 10 minutes

17 May 2013

My son, loaned his truck to a friend. The friend hit a mailbox and did some yard damage. He fled the scene, the truck was not drivable. My son paid for the damages to the homeowner. The truck was put in impound with a 72 hr. detective hold and I was wanting to know when he goes to get his truck from impound will he have any problems. The truck will be picked up after the 72 hr hold has expired. Thanks
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17 May 2013

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17 May 2013
ScottyMacEsq
ScottyMacEsq
Thank you for using Pearl. It's possible that the police might think that he was the one that collided with the mailbox, and COULD potentially charge him with the crime of fleeing the scene: IC 9-26-1-4 Duties of driver of motor vehicle causing damage to property other than another vehicle Sec. 4. (a) The driver of a motor vehicle that causes damage to the property of another person, other than damage to a vehicle, shall do the following: (1) Immediately stop the motor vehicle at the scene of the accident or as close to the accident as possible in a manner that does not obstruct traffic more than is necessary. (2) Immediately return to and remain at the scene of the accident until the driver does the following: (A) Takes reasonable steps to locate and notify the owner or person in charge of the property of the damage. (B) Gives the person the driver's name and address and the registration number of the motor vehicle. (C) Upon request, exhibits the driver's license of the driver. (b) If after reasonable inquiry the driver of the motor vehicle cannot find the owner or person in charge of the damaged property, the driver of the motor vehicle shall do the following: (1) Notify either the sheriff's department of the county in which the damaged property is located or a member of the state police department. (2) Give the sheriff's department or state police department the information required by this section. As added by P.L.2-1991, SEC.14. Amended by P.L.125-2012, SEC.297. IC 9-26-1-8 .... (b) A person who knowingly or intentionally fails to stop or comply with section 3 or 4 of this chapter after causing damage to the property of another person commits a Class B misdemeanor So if there is no support that the friend was driving, it's entirely possible that your son could be arrested (probably not, but possible) and charged (more likely, although not absolutely certain). If it were me, I would first contact the police department and see if any warrant was issued in regards XX XXXX. He should also contact the police department and see if anything needs to be done or any statement needs to be made. If there's a warrant, they will probably want him to "come in" to talk about it. If they won't take the statement by phone, that's a yellow flag (in that it's not certain that they are looking at him as a suspect for a crime, but that's sometimes how they get suspects in the office to arrest them). If there is no warrant and no indication that they want him to come in, that's not certain that there will not be in the future, and I would suggest that he get as much evidence together as possible (even "passive" texts about his friend hitting the mailbox to show that the friend did, etc...) He would want to be able to prove that it was not him that actually hit the mailbox, but someone else. A text from his friend could indicate as much, as well as any witness to the incident. Hope that clears things up a bit. If you have any other questions, please let me know. If not, and you have not yet, please rate my answer AND press the "submit" button, if applicable. Please note that I don't get any credit for my answer unless and until you rate it a 3, 4, 5 (good or better). Thank you, and good luck to you!
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ScottyMacEsq
ScottyMacEsq
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Licensed Texas General Practice Attorney
17 May 2013
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