Hot Pursuit- Failure to Stop

Have you ever found yourself in the situation where you are driving and see a speeding police vehicle approaching yours?  In the moment, you may be overcome by the feeling of panic. But, count to ten and breathe carefully because the last thing you want to do is run from the police. By South Carolina statute, failure to stop a vehicle when signaled by law enforcement is defined as a defendant driving a motor vehicle on a public road, street, or highway signaled to stop by law enforcement vehicle with a siren or flashing light and defendant’s failure to stop.

Any attempt to increase the speed of a vehicle or any method used to evade the police is prima facie evidence of a violation of the South Carolina statute as it pertains to failure to stop a vehicle when signaled by a law enforcement vehicle.  Failure to see the flashing lights or to hear the sirens will not excuse a failure to stop when a reasonable driver would see the flashing lights or hear the sirens under the circumstances. 

 If you fail to stop your vehicle when signaled by law enforcement then you can face jail time ranging from 90 days to 3 years or a fine of $500 with mandatory license suspension for at least 30 days.  If you are facing a second offense of failing to stop when signaled by law enforcement, you can face up to 5 years in jail with a mandatory license suspension of 1 year from date of conviction. If bodily harm is involved, you may face up to 10 years with a mandatory 3-year license suspension beginning after imprisonment. If death is involved, jail time can reach up to 25 years with a mandatory 3-year license suspension beginning after imprisonment.

If a law enforcement vehicle is pursuing you, the best course of action is to signal and pull over onto the side of the road. There are mitigating circumstances that will excuse one’s failure to stop when signaled by a law enforcement vehicle to do so. Attorney Daniel Selwa knows that if you did not stop due to a medical emergency, then you have a defense. There may be other mitigating circumstances as well that excuse your failure to stop when signaled by police enforcement. Let Daniel Selwa investigate your case and present your best defense. 

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