A Spokane woman has been charged for her actions in a hit-and-run crash that cost a motorcyclist his leg. The crash took place on April 23 at Southeast Boulevard and 11th Avenue in Spokane when an SUV reportedly driven by Leslie Hester struck Daniel Inwood and his motorcycle.
Inwood lost his left leg near the knee in the crash and might have died if a local dentist hadn’t come across the scene and quickly administered first aid, including putting a tourniquet on the damaged leg. Inwood spent nearly a week in the hospital after the crash.
Witnesses, including Inwood, who remained conscious after the crash, got a good look at the vehicle that hit him because it appeared as if it was about to stop. But it then drove off.
Thanks to an anonymous tip, as well as a distinctive part of the vehicle left at the scene, police caught up with Hester several days later. According to court documents at her arraignment, Hester knew she’d been in a crash, and when detectives located and were examining her car, she approached them and told them the damage was from a hit-and-run in a store parking lot a few weeks prior.
This story later changed to her being attacked by another person in the vehicle with her, which caused her to lose control and hit Inwood. It’s not clear how much of that story is true, but it’s also become known that she’d already repaired the damaged taillight and that she’d told at least one person that there was human skin on her vehicle. She admitted recent drug use to police, but it’s not clear whether that was a factor in the crash.
It’s also been reported that she wasn’t even licensed to drive. She has apparently had previous trouble with the law, including several theft convictions, but has no history of violent crime. She was charged with felony hit-and-run for this crash, which—because an injury was caused—could carry a penalty of up to five years in prison and a $10,000 fine.
Traffic safety experts have noted that hit-and-run crashes continue to be a problem. They’re not always tracked well and are often lumped in with other kinds of crashes, so statistics are hard to come by, but we know of at least five incidents already this year in which the Washington State Patrol has asked for the public’s help in identifying drivers who fled the scene of a crash, not counting this Spokane incident.
It remains an unfortunate truth that some drivers will always try to flee after a crash, even when it results in serious injury or death.
If you’ve been the victim of a hit-and-run driver, Craig Swapp & Associates can help. Our attorneys have extensive experience with motor vehicle law, including motorcycle accident cases. Give us a call today at 800-404-9000 or fill out the online contact form below.