In the Hawaiian Islands, there is a feeling of community. It wouldn’t be unusual to see someone stop and help a neighbor in need. That’s exactly what one woman did when she saw a vehicle stranded on the side of the Honolulu freeway where a female passenger was visibly injured… only this time the situation took an unexpected turn.
When the woman stopped to help, she parked her car in front of the broken-down SUV. She left her purse, her keys, her phone and her high heels in the car, jumping out to help. While she was assisting the injured woman, the driver of the SUV jumped into her vehicle and drove away.
After some investigation, police determined that the SUV had been reported as stolen, and the three individuals in the SUV at the time of the crash were the prime suspects. The good Samaritan said that she got a very different story from the woman who claimed that she was a hitchhiker, and that the crash resulted from a struggle over a knife.
The good Samaritan’s car was eventually found through use of a tracking app installed on the owner’s phone. Her purse and phone were eventually recovered. The only item that was lost in the incident was a winter parka that she used for her job as an ice-skating coach.
“This is like a plot Hawaii Five-O would reject,” said that woman after the stressful and unusual incident. “All I can do is laugh at this point.” This situation does seem to have been made up of some unbelievable, almost surreal elements, but it brings up a good point about good Samaritans. What if a good Samaritan is physically injured while helping the victim of an accident?
A driver’s liability doesn’t automatically end when the vehicles come to a stop. Generally, if a driver’s negligence puts a third-party individual rendering aid in harm’s way, the driver could be held liable for the injuries that the good Samaritan suffers. Those that find themselves in this type of situation should seek consultation with a personal injury attorney.
Source: abc, “Good Samaritan’s Car Stolen After Honolulu Crash,” Jennifer Sinco Kelleher, Feb. 5, 2014