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Wrongful Death

Penalties for Hit and Run Charges in The State of Arizona

Penalties for Hit and Run Charges in The State of Arizona

Automobile accidents can be traumatizing, stressful and expensive. In Arizona, when an accident is caused and either the party responsible or not responsible has left the scene of where the accident happened, that is called “fleeing the scene of an accident”, or more popularly known as a “hit and run” or ARS 28-662.

Even if the vehicle that was struck was unoccupied, the person that hit the vehicle is responsible for attempting to locate the owner. If unable to find the owner, a note with the driver’s contact information must be left in a visible location. If this is not done, serious penalties can happen.

What are the Penalties for a Hit and Run in Arizona?

Of the 50 states, Arizona ranked number 5 in a study conducted by AAA that ranks the states on their hit and run fatalities of 2018. Below we outline the different types of hit and run accidents and their potential penalties. They range due to the severity of the accident and those involved. In any case, it is always recommended for those that left the scene to seek legal advice from a hit and run attorney to investigate the incident and look for the best possible outcome.

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Pre-charge Investigation Stage Cases

‘Pre-charge’, also called the ‘Investigation Stage’ of a criminal case is the stage when someone is under observation for a criminal offense, but no formal action has been taken. When someone is involved in such a situation, it can have a significant negative impact on different areas of their life. This initial state precedes any formal charges. Usually, a person is considered to be involved in a pre-charge stage when they have been arrested by the law enforcement and have been questioned, but later released without facing any charges. This means that the person stands in imminent danger of getting arrested anytime if police find any evidence against them.

Even if the person has not been convicted, the arrest itself may be recorded and documented, which can have a negative impact on their personal life. Their story may make it to the newspaper headline, or it may be put up on any of the news reporting websites. The individual is stuck in the pre-charge stage after being arrested, until they are actually charged with the crime. Anyone who has been arrested in connection to a crime but was later released without charges, is advised to consult a qualified criminal defense attorney. (more…)


Arizona Wrongful Death Lawyer – What is a Lawsuit against Wrongful Death

Wrongful Death Lawsuits

While we do not want to believe it was ever our loved one’s time to go, a wrongful death case implies there was negligence or intentional harm that resulted in the death of a family member. In a wrongful death lawsuit, a representative of the estate of the deceased, or a statutory beneficiary files a civil lawsuit against the defendant, claiming that as a result of their negligence, they wrongfully killed a loved one, or in some cases, the defendant caused intentional harm that resulted in death. As David Cantor from Cantor Injury Lawyers, a highly experienced Phoenix car accident attorney and wrongful death attorney mentions, one unfortunate example of a wrongful death could be the result of a motor vehicle accident.

Understanding if your loved one suffered a wrongful death can be a confusing and complicated process. Because of the complexity of the issue,  each Arizona wrongful death lawyer at Cantor Injury Lawyers can explain what constitutes a wrongful death case and make things a little easier.

When do Wrongful Death Lawsuits Happen?
The most common wrongful death lawsuits come in the form of medical malpractice lawsuits or accident fatalities. It is important to remember that a wrongful death lawsuit is a civil matter, not a criminal one.

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Different Types of Homicides

In Arizona there are five levels of homicide.  The highest is First Degree Murder with the notice to seek the death penalty; which is called Capital Murder.  Capital Murder is when the prosecutor is not only looking to prove the standard first degree premeditated homicide elements but also has alleged  aggravating factors which are qualified as heinous, cruel and depraved.  For example, torture, mutilation of a body after its dead and fear of the victim before they died, just to name a few.  Typically, they are situations that people normally only see on grotesque TV shows and SAW movies.

However, sometimes the state prosecutors allege a Capital Murder charge that is simply absurd.  For example, we had a client who was charged with Capital Murder when an infant died in her care at a day care center.  Our client professed her innocence from the beginning but despite that, she was facing death.  Our work on the case ultimately showed that the infant died from medical implications and all charges were dismissed with prejudice.

Second Degree Murder is when somebody is reckless with their standard of conduct.  An example of this would be when somebody takes a gun and decides to shoot a paper target, ignores the fact that behind the target is a school yard.  This is an example of someone having a very reckless standard of care.  Typically, these types of charges stem from reckless handling of a weapon, however, the state will sometimes charge people with Second Degree Murder for deaths resulting from a DUI collision.

Although that happens, DUI vehicular homicides are more appropriately charged at the next level down called Manslaughter.  That is a negligent standard of care rather than a Second Degree Murder which is a reckless standard of conduct.  Most of the time we can get Manslaughter reduced to the lowest level of homicide which is Negligent Homicide.  Negligent Homicide is when someone caused the death of another.  This is the lowest level of homicide and the penalty can be as little as probation with no jail.

Although some of these offenses are more serious than others, they all carry significant penalties.  You need an experienced criminal defense attorney who knows how to successfully defend the charges.

There are many defenses to all of these levels of homicide.  If you need help with a homicide charge, visit the Homicide page and contact us immediately.


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DM Cantor

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For Family Law questions please go to Cantor Law Group.
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