The West Virginia State Police and Saint Albans Police Department now have a woman in custody that they believe ran over an off duty police officer and then fled the scene. As in other hit and run accidents, authorities were asking the public for help in finding the vehicle and its driver. The woman has now been charged with malicious wounding.
The off duty police officer was run down by the woman as he was trying to apprehend her in connection with a shoplifting incident. After running down the officer, the woman left the scene. Authorities were able to track the vehicle to an apartment that was rented by the woman's ex-boyfriend. Her ex-boyfriend gave police her cell phone number. After making contact with the woman via text messages, she has turned herself in to police.
The officer suffered several injuries in the accident, including what has been characterized as a "serious head injury," and was taken to Charleston Area Medical Center's General Hospital. It is unclear whether the officer will have to have surgery in connection with any of his injuries. As of the last report, he was still in the intensive care unit in stable condition.
Authorities were able to identify and apprehend the woman involved in this accident relatively quickly, although this is not always the case in hit and run accidents. Some West Virginia families have to wait weeks, if not months to know who it was that injured or killed their loved one. In addition to be charged criminally in this incident, the woman may also face civil action from the off duty officer. Medical expenses and lost wages can add up quickly and put a financial strain on the person that was injured, as well as the family. If the injured person is able to prove that the party deemed responsible for the injury was negligent, the injured person may be awarded costs and other damages suffered as a result of the accident.
Source: wowktv.com, "Woman charged with malicious wounding of an off-duty police officer," April Kaull, Dec. 31, 2012