Call it a double whammy of bad luck. A Kahala woman riding a moped along Diamond Head Rd. not only got hit by car, but while she was in the hospital, her moped was stolen.
Tammy Poteat is pretty banged up with scrapes all over her arm and leg, a fractured foot and a broken bone in her spine.
“I, all of a sudden, have a broken back. I don’t know when I’ll be able to go to work again. It’s terrible,” she said.
While an ambulance took Poteat to the hospital, she said police told her they would lock up the moped so friends could pick it up later.
“My roommate had some friends go last night to retrieve it and they didn’t tell us until this morning that we went last night and it’s gone. There’s no moped on the street,” Poteat said.
Attorney Richard Turbin said this happens fairly often. “We have quite a few clients who this has happened to,” he said.
Turbin said the police should have impounded the moped because it also serves as evidence.
“So the victim can pick it up later on, or at least have the evidence available to prove that the accident was not their fault,” Turbin said.
Turbin also suggested having a friend at the scene as soon as possible to at least watch the moped.
Poteat also wanted to know why police never got a statement from her. She said she was brought to Queen’s Medical Center and was there for about eight hours, yet police never came to take her statement.
Turbin said the statement is critical, especially when claiming insurance benefits.
“If the insurance company can avoid paying benefits to the injured victim, they’ll avoid benefits to the injured victim,” he said.
Turbin said in this case, Poteat should go to the police station as soon as possible to make sure her statement is included in the police report.
KHON2 spoke to the Honolulu Police Dept. as well to find out what the standard procedure is for handling a moped in a case like this.
A spokesperson said they won’t impound a moped unless the rider was being arrested, but they do help get it to the side and secure it for pickup.
As for taking Poteat’s statement, officers will follow up with her to make sure it’s all in the report.