After an accident, it is not uncommon for drivers to panic. Many are in shock, but most have the decency and wherewithal to make sure that other victims are okay. In a case that has already made national headlines, a Connecticut man was accused of fleeing a hit-and-run accident with the victim still attached to his fender and fighting to free herself. He now faces criminal charges.

In March, a driver struck a 23-year-old who was standing in front of a disabled vehicle in Bridgeport. While waiting for help, the victim was struck by the oncoming vehicle. After the accident, the driver continued to peel away, even as the woman was yelling at him and hitting him in the face while trying to break free from the fender. Eventually, the woman fell off the van, when she fell onto the roadway. The woman suffered a head trauma, but reports did not indicate how severe her injuries were. She was treated and released from St. Vincent’s Medical Center.

The van driver faces numerous criminal charges, including reckless endangerment, reckless driving, evading responsibility and driving under the influence of drugs or bail. According to the Connecticut Post, the driver was released after posting a $500 bond. He was arrested in his home after the accident. During the arrest, the van driver argued that he left the scene in self-defense.

Criminal cases of recklessness or negligence often result in civil personal injury cases. The hit-and-run victim may be entitled to significant compensation including medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages, personal losses and any other economic damages she may have sustained.

Source: The Associated Press, “Conn. man accused of fleeing accident while victim still on fender; she eventually fell off,” June 14, 2012.