A 51-year-old hit-and-run driver recently received a conditional sentence of eight months followed by probation for 18 months for knocking down a pedestrian in Jan. 2014. According to British Columbia Supreme Court documents, this pedestrian accident occurred on a morning with poor visibility when the defendant backed out of his driveway. He failed to notice a woman who was on her morning walk and struck her with his vehicle.
The 87-year-old pedestrian suffered serious injuries, including a fractured skull that caused nerve damage. She is now deaf in the left ear. Furthermore, multiple ribs were fractured, causing a collapsed lung, and her jaw was broken. The accident had severe consequences on the elderly pedestrian who has since been admitted to a facility where she receives 24-hour care.
When deciding on the sentence, the court reportedly considered the fact that visibility was poor, the lack of recklessness on the part of the driver and the fact that alcohol or drugs played no role. Furthermore, the defendant had no previous record and produced written references. This was despite the fact that he drove away from the injured pedestrian and returned twice — once providing his personal information to officers — without admitting that he was the one who knocked her down.
When a person is injured in a pedestrian accident in British Columbia, financial relief may be pursued in a civil court. A conviction against the driver in a criminal court will certainly help a related personal injury claim, but it is not a requirement for a successful outcome. The most logical step might be to seek the support and guidance of an experienced personal injury lawyer to navigate the lawsuit on behalf of the injured pedestrian.
Source: vancouversun.com, “Surrey man avoids jail time for hit and run involving elderly woman“, Keith Fraser, June 20, 2017