Individuals who are detained by police because they may have committed a crime often attempt to flee from the police. In such cases, the flight instinct may lead the individuals to commit another, far more serious crime. A recent traffic accident on Rock Creek Parkway in the District of Columbia illustrates the point.
According to the U.S. Park police, an officer attempted to stop a Lexus SUV for a traffic violation on Washington’s Rock Creek Parkway. Rather than obey the order to stop, the driver of the SUV sped away from the officer. The officer did not pursue because the incident did not meet the requirement for an active pursuit. A few minutes later, the SUV collided with a Honda Accord sedan. Three men in the Honda died at the scene. The two adults in the SUV were initially believed not to have suffered severe injuries. However, further examination determined that the woman was in critical condition.
The exact circumstances of the collision were not released by police. Also, the Park Police did not divulge the reason for the initial traffic stop. No further information was released regarding the cause of the accident.
Further investigation revealed that the driver of the SUV has a long history of traffic violations in the District of Columbia. According to the D.C. DMV website, the driver has 44 outstanding tickets with a total worth of $12,300. Forty-three tickets were issued for speeding violations, and one was issued for running a red light. This history may explain the reason why the driver refused the order to pull over.
No information was released in media accounts of the accident concerning potential criminal liability. However, the driver who refused the police stop order is facing manslaughter charges for the deaths of the three persons in the Honda Accord. If he is determined to have been intoxicated, the criminal charges will be more serious.
Seeking legal counsel
Anyone who is facing similar charges may benefit from the advice of an experienced criminal defense attorney. An experienced criminal defense lawyer can provide a helpful evaluation of the evidence, suggestions of potential defense strategies, and, when appropriate, assist in negotiating an acceptable plea agreement.