Over the past year, the attorneys at DeGiacomo & Mikhlin, P.C. have noticed a significant new investigative technique being used by the Massachusetts State Police when investigating allegations of leaving the scene of either property damage or personal injury. In these cases, the State Police, and sometimes other local law enforcement agencies, will send a letter explaining that you have been accused of leaving the scene and that you must contact them to discuss the matter.
Often, this occurs when the police do not have enough evidence to charge you. Usually, the lack of evidence is a result of knowing that your car was involved, but not knowing who was driving the car. They will write the letter hoping that you will call and admit that you were either involved in the accident or driving the car that day. This is important because you cannot be charged with Leaving the Scene unless there is probable cause that you were driving the vehicle in question.
When we receive these calls, our advice is almost always the same: say nothing. You have the absolute right to remain silent in Massachusetts. By evoking this right, you are ensuring that the police do not gain damaging evidence. Typically, we will even call the police and inform them that you have retained counsel and will not be speaking to them. This tactic ensures that the police will stop trying to contact you.
If you have received one of these letters, or if you have been charged with Leaving the Scene of Property Damage or Leaving the Scene of Personal Injury, call DeGiacomo & Mikhlin today for a free consultation.