Whether you’re a baby sitter, an uncle or just a friend put in charge of a child, it’s your duty to look out for the best interests of a young person, if you agree to take on that responsibility. If a child is hurt while under your care, you’re obligated to see he or she gets the proper treatment. In the case of a traffic accident, that means notifying the appropriate authorities as well as the child’s parent or guardian.
A Plainfield Township, Pennsylvania, man who crashed his motorcycle into a neighbor’s fence last Thursday is facing criminal charges, but not just because of the accident itself. According to court records, the accident injured his passenger, a 13-year-old boy. The boy complained of shoulder pain, had some visible cuts and road rash and said he felt like he was going to pass out, court records say.
Instead of taking the boy to a hospital, the driver told him to walk home, according to court documents. He then allegedly used an all-terrain vehicle with a trailer to retrieve the crashed motorcycle from the crash site and put it in his garage. He’s accused of hiding the motorcycle there so authorities wouldn’t know about the accident.
Police did learn about the crash, though, and began searching for the man that night. They also tried to get medical help for the boy, but his mother said she would take him to a hospital. Two days later, the mother told police the boy had suffered a lacerated spleen. He also wasn’t wearing a helmet during the crash, a violation for which the motorcycle’s driver could be held responsible.
The man eventually turned himself in to police and admitted to the crash. He most likely didn’t report it immediately because he’s considered a “habitual offender”: His driver’s license was suspended after a DUI incident and he was listed as being on state parole. The new charges against him, which include endangering the welfare of children, accident involving personal injury while not properly licensed and tampering with physical evidence, reflect the fact that he shouldn’t have been driving the motorcycle, let alone with a child passenger. It’s highly likely he’ll be ordered to compensate the boy’s family for his injuries, and that he won’t be allowed to take the boy on a motorcycle ride ever again.
Source: Lehigh Valley Live, “Plainfield Township man tries to hide after crashing motorcycle, injuring young passenger, records say,” Jeff Sistrunk, June 19, 2012