One of the important things that must be proven on a hit-and-run charge is that the driver was aware that he or she hit a person. After 45-year-old Amy Senser was charged with vehicular homicide for an alleged hit-and-run accident that took the life of a 38-year-old man, questions have been raised as to whether she knew she hit anyone. The accident occurred on Aug. 23, 2011 at approximately 11:08 p.m. in Minneapolis near the entrance ramp to westbound Interstate 94 and Riverside Avenue. While prosecutors allege that the woman hit the man and drove off, she insists she believed she only hit a piece of construction equipment.
Senser’s lawyer says there is no evidence that she was aware that her vehicle had hit anyone on the night of the accident. The man who died had been putting gas into his vehicle which had stalled at the time of the accident. Senser had become lost at the time and was trying to get to the Xcel Energy Center, according to the Star Tribune, and was trying to pick up her daughters from a concert.
She had gone to the concert with her daughters, but left because of a migraine, which may have caused her to become lost.
Police do not have any direct evidence, such as eyewitness accounts, to support their claim that Senser knew she had hit the man or had knowledge of an injury. The prosecutor admitted that the state bears the burden of showing, beyond a reasonable doubt, that the woman knew she had hit the before driving away.
Source: Star Tribune, “Driving details unfold in Amy Senser case,” Abby Simons, Jan. 24, 2012