Return to CALJIC Part 14-17 – Contents
Misdemeanor Hit and Run:
Defendant Need Only Locate Owner Or Leave Note
*Modify ¶’s 1-7 of CJ 16.650 (Jan. 93) to provide as follows [added language is capitalized; deleted language is between <<>>]:
The driver of any vehicle knowingly involved in an accident resulting in damage to any property, including vehicles, other than [his] [her] own, must IMMEDIATELY stop [his] [her] car <<immediately>> and DO EITHER OF THE FOLLOWING:
1. locate and notify the owner or person in charge of such property of the current name and residence address of the driver and owner of the vehicle involved, and
<<2.>> upon being requested by such owner or person in charge of such property [he] [she] shall present [his] [her] driver’s license and vehicle registration <<and evidence of financial responsibility>> to such person; OR
<<If there is no owner or person in charge of such property available to receive the above information, [he] [she] must>>
2. leave in a conspicuous place on the vehicle or other property damaged a written notice giving the name and address of the driver and of the owner of the vehicle involved, and a statement of the circumstances surrounding the accident and the damage, and without unnecessary delay, notify the police department of the city wherein the collision occurred, or if it occurred in unincorporated territory, the local headquarters of the Department of the California Highway Patrol.
The willful failure of the driver of a vehicle involved in an accident resulting in damage to property or another vehicle to perform <<any>> EITHER <<of>> the foregoing duties SPECIFIED IN #1 OR THE DUTIES SPECIFIED IN #2 ABOVE is a misdemeanor.
Points & Authorities
As amended effective January 1, 1993 VC 20002 states that the driver of a vehicle involved in an accident must “either” locate and notify the owner of the property, etc. (VC 20002(a)(1)) or leave a note. (VC 20002(a)(2).) The requirement of CJ 16.650 (Jan 1993 Pocket Part) that both duties must be performed is wrong. Nor does VC 20002 any longer require the driver to provide evidence of financial responsibility upon request. However, such a duty is imposed by VC 16025 which is punishable as an infraction. (See California Drunk Driving Law (Fast Eddie Publishing, Willits, CA) Ch. 2, § 7.)
Failure to adequately instruct the jury upon matters relating to proof of any element of the charge and/or the prosecution’s burden of proof thereon violates the defendant’s state (Art. I, § 15 and § 16) and federal (6th and 14th Amendments) constitutional rights to trial by jury and due process. [See generally, FORECITE PG VII(C).]