If you recall the car accident I was in last October, where the “victim” darted her car in front of me as I was inching out of the median on the PCH… yeah, that incident… well, it’s gone from absurd to outrageous.
Never mind that this woman drove in front of me, caused the light contact between our vehicles, and took off. (I didn’t catch her license plate nor did I see her face, so with nothing to report I left too). I was freaking out from the near-collision since just a slight shift in her direction would have caused her to slam into my driver’s side. I’d been too close to death after several suicide attempts to think clearly after that. I knew I needed to be safe and distanced myself. I had NO IDEA that the other driver then went on to hit another vehicle, lost control, and flipped over. At least, that’s what I was told. Had I seen that I would have stuck around and called 911. I’ve worked in a soup kitchen, was a teacher, a mall Santa, and am actively involved politically in the fight for economic, social, and environmental justice. I wouldn’t abandon someone in need like that, stranger or not, even if I wanted to. I’m not capable of such callousness.
(Nobody was injured, fyi).
Yet I was charged with hit-and-run. The other driver meanwhile took off to Europe just after the incident and didn’t even report it to her insurance company until she returned. My insurance didn’t hear from hers until 2 months after the accident and suddenly out of the blue she complained of injury. Even if she had one, at that point it was impossible to determine whether it was a result of the accident or her trip overseas. Either way, she’d had only 2 physical therapy visits yet my insurance forked over $9500 for her medical expenses. But was insurance fraud enough for this bitch? Hell no.
I had emailed her once on February 26th, prior to my arraignment, in the hopes she’d support dropping the hit-and-run charge and opt instead to let our insurance companies resolve the matter. Her lawyer replied, requesting that I not contact her. I was disappointed but complied, of course. Yet in June she still went out of her way to falsely report that I’d been “harassing” her so the prosecutor, not particularly keen on actually investigating much of anything apparently, just assumed it was true and threw a stink.
I forwarded the Feb 26th email exchange to my lawyer to show the D.A., who presented no further evidence of continued contact. That one email I had sent was perfectly legal, as well. Regardless, I got an accusatory call a couple days later from Detective Richard Curry who’d been contacted by the D.A. and instructed me to “cease and desist all contact with the victim”. I informed him that I’d already been respecting her wishes for months and that she was hardly a fucking victim. He insisted I had contacted her again “yesterday”. I told him to check his fucking records. A few seconds later he acknowledged that I had last contacted her on February 26th. Yeah, no shit. Detective.
Despite my legal 5150 mental health status due to a suicide attempt in April 2015, despite the legit hypertensive anxiety attack I was diagnosed with after the car incident, the D.A. refuses to recognize that I left the scene due to medical reasons. Hell, I didn’t even cause the damn accident!! The other driver lost control of her vehicle further up the road after darting in front of me when I was in the median, after driving into oncoming traffic, after striking ANOTHER vehicle, and after she lost control of her own damn car further up the road! How is any of that even remotely my fault??
There is no evidence whatsoever to the contrary.
But there IS evidence of my anxiety/depression problems. I was diagnosed with anxiety issues in the 7th grade and was on medication for a couple years. My 5150 status for attempted suicide is on record with the State of California. I am currently in therapy through Medi-Cal, which means that is also on record with the State of California. The D.A. can ignore real evidence and embrace conjecture if she wants, but she’s connecting dots that don’t actually exist. Frankly, that’s just lazy.
And in case there is any doubt of the prosecutor’s refusal to be reasonable, I am also still being charged with DUI despite the fact that eight months after the cops took a blood sample the crime lab concluded that there was ZERO alcohol and ZERO active marijuana in my system. That’s right. I was provably, indisputably sober. And yes, the D.A. has been presented with those results. AND STILL WILL NOT DROP THE CHARGE. Apparently it’s too complicated and she needs experts to “interpret” what ZERO means…
My guess is she’s just delaying things because the DUI helps support the false narrative that I was in a reckless hit-and-run rather than acknowledge the real events that took place and the contributing mental health factors. But that would require that there had been a thorough investigation, which there wasn’t.
I had been in such a state of heightened anxiety that they perceived me to be under the influence. Doesn’t that in itself say something? And the hypertensive anxiety attack was diagnosed while I was in custody. HELLO!! The whole crux of this case relies heavily on my being under the influence because then it would be easy to paint me as being at-fault, reckless, and irresponsible. Too bad for them that isn’t the case.
But apparently the State of California is still content with wasting taxpayer dollars on me. Hey, it’s their money. But it is an utterly foolish pursuit and demonstrates a severe lack of the system’s ability to prioritize cases. Why go after the real criminals, right? Like maybe the other driver who committed insurance fraud after being released from the hospital without a scratch and only after taking a vacation to Europe before ever even reporting the accident! Does that sound like an injured person to you? Does that sound like a victim to you? Then months later she suddenly cried that I was “harassing” her with zero evidence to show for it? Please. She isn’t a victim. She’s a vindictive cunt milking the system for personal gain. And RIGHT UNDER the nose of the authorities.
The other driver is clearly, furiously, deflecting her own behavior. My insurance company even acknowledged that her recklessness and speed were factors in the accident. The only reason I was found partially “at-fault” was because of the DUI charge, which will inevitably be either dropped or defeated in Court. The evidence is clear on that front.
Odds are probable that there will be a trial. I have already told my lawyer that I will never plead to a criminal offense that I am not guilty of. I won’t play that game where prosecutor’s try to bully the accused into taking a deal 95% of the time so they don’t have to actually work for a conviction. Only 5% of cases go to trial before a jury. Since the DUI has no merit this really boils down to a single misdemeanor count of hit-and-run stemming from an accident I did not cause nor was even aware of, with a mental health issue to top it off.
Reducing that one charge to an infraction such as “disturbing the peace” would be an acceptable compromise. I’d agree to pay a fine so the State can make up a portion of its losses. Sure. Why not? The “victim” has already been compensated and has nothing further to gain. But if California really wants a criminal conviction they will need a jury and a full-blown trial to do so.
We all know the American justice system operates as a business for profit, not justice. So with that in mind it would be a smart financial decision not to waste further capital on a case that would maybe find me guilty of a single non-violent misdemeanor. And I wouldn’t bet money on that outcome.
My advice to California? Save the time and effort for the murderers, rapists, and others accused of violent crimes instead of targeting a tax-paying, law-abiding educator recovering from depression. Besides, I’m likely moving the fuck out of here soon anyway.
But hey, I realize I’m advocating for justice… so I shouldn’t hold my breath. I know how America works. Or rather, how it doesn’t.
See you in Court.