A U.S. Army staff sergeant who obtained surveillance footage of her car being struck in an alleged hit and run last month received compensation from the other driver’s insurance company, after much “hair-pulling,” she said Tuesday.
Although no arrest was made in the case, Staff Sgt. Shelly Anderson, a former Santa Clarita resident who was visiting family last month, said she was having breakfast on March 1 with her father at Saugus Cafe. When she walked out of the restaurant, she said she found that her car had been hit.
When she checked the security camera footage, she saw a vehicle allegedly reverse into her car, the driver get out of his vehicle, survey the damage, and then return to his car and drive away. She filed a report with the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station, but the video was too grainy for them to pull a license plate number confidently.
Soon after she put her story online, Anderson said an anonymous person reached out to her and gave her the plate, but Sheriff’s Station officials said she would still need to find an eyewitness.
She then gave the information to her insurance company and The Signal and, soon after, her insurance company was able to come up with a name and the suspect’s insurance company.
“My insurance company then told me I had to call that insurance company to file a claim against the person,” said Anderson. “I then proceeded to contact that person’s insurance company and showed him the video I had of their client.”
After going through the process and putting enough pressure on the insurance company, the suspect’s insurance company accepted liability for the incident, Anderson said.
“I still had to pay the deductible out-of-pocket up-front first to get my car taken care of,” said Anderson. “And then the other insurance company would pay for the cost of damages, and later refund my deductible.”
“My car is fixed after a lot of hair-pulling,” she added.
She said that a specialized cake she had made for a family member, which was destroyed in the hit and run, would not be refunded and she would need to go to small claims court to recover those costs, she said.
But all in all, she said she’s staying positive and she wants other people to do the same.
“LIfe has lots of ups and lots of downs and you just have to keep on going through the mud,” said Anderson. “Stay resilient and stay positive.”