Police make arrest in reported Capitol Hill Car2Go hit and run

Screen shot 2013-04-01 at 11.27.08 AM[mappress mapid="21"]Seattle Police arrested a 28-year-old Capitol Hill man in Saturday night’s reported hit and run involving a Car2Go vehicle striking a bicyclist at the intersection of Bellevue Ave and E Olive St.

According to an SPD report on the incident, officers were able to track the driver down at his Capitol Hill apartment with help from the car sharing service. Saturday night, Car2Go was able to provide the name and address of the person who had last rented the car reported by the victim and witnesses at the scene of the 8:30 PM incident and also located the vehicle — still checked out to the suspect — at E Thomas and Harvard Ave where it sat with “fresh damage to the front end.” We’ve asked Car2Go for more information about its policies regarding this type of incident but have not yet heard back from the company. UPDATE: We’ve asked Car2Go about its policy for releasing information to aid police investigations and how it deals with customers who violate its terms of service but have not yet heard back from the company beyond an initial statement that representatives could not comment on this specific incident. UPDATE x2: Car2Go declined to comment on its policies but its terms of service stipulate that applicants with “driving-relate” criminal convictions are not eligible to use the service. The terms do not appear to stipulate what happens when a customer’s criminal record changes. The company is clear, however, that it will release customer information to authorities in the event of a criminal investigation:

The Member is solely responsible for the consequences of traffic offences or criminal acts that are established to have been perpetrated in connection with use of the vehicle, and shall be responsible to car2go for any fees and costs car2go may incur in connection with same. In such events, car2go is under obligation to and may provide the name of the Member to the appropriate authorities.

The 28-year-old booked on investigation of hit and run of a pedestrian told police he was driving the Smart Car at the time of the hit and run but was not aware of having hit anybody.

The bike rider and witnesses at the scene separately told police a much different story:

Screen shot 2013-04-01 at 8.43.07 AM

According to the report, the rider suffered lacerations to his shin that required emergency room treatment.

The Car2Go vehicle suffered significant damage to the driver’s side front of the car.

The arrested driver was released on $1,000 bail Sunday morning. Charges in this kind of traffic investigation can take weeks. According to Seattle records, the driver has a mostly clean ticket history in the city with only a couple of speeding infractions in recent years.

The incident wasn’t the only car vs. bike collision reported over the Easter Weekend. Medics were called out to a crash at 19th and Thomas Sunday afternoon. We’ll update this  post if we find out any more about that incident.

15 thoughts on “Police make arrest in reported Capitol Hill Car2Go hit and run

  1. Thanks for the followup! It would be great to know more about Car2Go’s policies regarding the release of customer information to police, if they ever return your calls.

  2. Significant damage to a Smart car yet the driver was unaware he hit someone? Yeah, right. Hopefully he had a weekend in self-torment as he awaited the eventual arrival of from the police.

    Accidents will happen and it’s sad when people can’t own up and take responsibility for them. Thankfully the driver wasn’t more seriously injured.

    With Spring’s arrival we’ll have more and more bikes on the road. I hope everyone (including bicyclists) slows down and is extra cautious.

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  4. The issue here isn’t about who owns the car. Accidents happen all the time. Regardless of if the driver owns the car, is borrowing the car from a friend, rented the car, zipcar or car2go… when someone is a hit-and-run driver, they’re just a @$$hole. I don’t need to read the car2go policy to know that they’re not going to hide the identity of who was last driving one of their cars.

  5. Driver was drunk and didn’t want to get arrested for a DUI and face more charges, right? In this day and age you have less liability if you hit and run so you get arrested once you sober up and have your lawyer make up some bs excuse for you. Nutz.

  6. “Only a couple” of speeding tickets? Given how little speed enforcement SPD does and that the driver probably doesn’t drive very much (hence using a car-sharing service), 2 speeding tickets seem like a lot to me.

    • I agree, and would add that I think car2go and other similar businesses should disqualify (from renting their vehicles) anyone with a moving traffic violation, at least for a certain number of years after their violation. Otherwise, there will be more incidents like this.

  7. Sounds like this guy was impaired, as well as a hit-and-run coward. I hope the proverbial book is thrown at him. Glad the rider was not more seriously injured.

    Back in my motorcycle days, I learned the first rule of riding is that two-wheeled vehicles and their riders are invisible to motorists, and the most common collisions are exactly like this one . . . a car makes a left turn, and cuts off or strikes the approaching rider. Be careful out there, people! You are invisible!

    • That’s why bicyclists need to do as much as reasonable to make themselves visible. Use lights and reflectors and wear a reflective vest. The number of bicyclists I see riding around at night without any lights or reflectors is absolutely mind-boggling.

      • Speaking of anecdotal evidence, I see cars with their lights off all the time.

        The driver clearly saw cyclist once the two vehicles made contact; what makes this of note is the failure to render aid, or the “run” aspect of the interaction. Distracted, inattentive, or disabled driving happens and in turn will vehicular collisions; what makes cyclist collisions of note, is that the one of the vehicles’ crumple zones are comprised of flesh and bone. How about we all put our best effort towards attentive traveling instead of blaming the victim for not being glaringly obvious?

      • I saw the commotion post accident. It was still light out. Not saying the biker was noticable, but reflectors at that time of day would not have helped.

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