Car Wreck with the other driver incriminating himself on the police dash-cam

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Case:  Car Wreck – The insurance company had denied liability, but then we find the police officer’s dash-cam video which shows other drivers admitting that they had just smoked weed right before they pulled out of the parking lot. 

(The insurance company was denying liability in a car wreck case. The police report was unable to determine fault due to conflicting statements. We ordered the police officer’s dash-cam video that showed the other driver had been smoking marijuana just before pulling out from a parking lot).

Our client and his wife were injured by a driver who had pulled out from a parking lot and struck the rear side of their vehicle.  The driver who caused the collision claimed that he had already pulled from the parking lot into the right lane and was established in this lane when our client changed lanes into his vehicle.

We did an open records request and obtained the police report, 911 tapes and reports, dash-cam video, and body-cam video from the police officers at the scene.  The police report stated that they could not determine who was at fault and that the statements were conflicting.   We watched the dash-cam video that showed the police officer interviewing the driver who had caused the collision.  On the dash-cam video the officer approaches the other driver’s vehicle and says “Wow, it really smells strong of weed inside your car”.  The other driver responds, “Yea, we were just smoking it in the parking lot before this happened”.  This conversation is not included in the police report. Why the officer did not include this in his report is unknown.

I advise in a letter to the insurance company that their driver was driving while under the influence of marijuana, and their driver had admitted this to the officer at the scene. The adjuster calls me and is indignant.  The adjuster advises that I could be sued for making such an outrageous claim – that nowhere on the police report is there any indication that their client was under the influence of marijuana at the time.  I calmly advise the adjuster that I have the video evidence (a copy of the dashcam video) and will be happy to send them a copy.

After the adjuster received a copy of the video the case settled for the limits of their insurance policy.

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