A Pompano Beach family is still hoping they will see justice done a week after a seventeen-year-old was mowed down on a local street by a hit-and-run driver. The teen, who suffered severe injuries including crushed ribs, a crushed pelvis, and traumatic head injuries, remains in the hospital after spending time in an intensive care unit. A $3,000 reward has been offered for information leading to the identification and arrest of the driver.
No Concern for the Victim
All hit-and-run drivers show a disregard for human life by fleeing the scene of an accident when they know or suspect someone has been injured and needs help. But some show even more callousness. In this incident, the driver stopped after hitting the boy, left the vehicle to see what he had hit, then got back into the vehicle and drove away.
He’s known to have done this because the Broward County Sheriff’s Office has obtained and released to the public surveillance video from a business near the scene that shows the collision. Police identified the vehicle as a dark-colored, older model Ford Econoline van but haven’t yet located the vehicle or the driver.
Florida’s Hit-and-Run Epidemic
Hit-and-run accidents are a major problem in Florida, accounting for around 25 percent of all crashes statewide. There were more than 99,000 hit-and-runs in Florida in 2016, an increase of more than 25 percent since just 2013. Most only cause property damage (for example, when a parked car is struck and the offending driver flees), but last year nearly 1,300 Floridians were seriously injured and 179 died in these crashes.
Overall, only about one in six hit-and-runs leads to charges, and it’s difficult to know how many are never solved because sometimes a case is only closed years after the accident. Cases with fatalities get extra attention, and charges are eventually brought in about half of them.
Drivers are urged to stay at the scene of any crash. In many cases, a driver will not even face charges, and even if he or she is at fault in the crash, the penalties may be less serious than those for fleeing will be. Drivers who are responsible for a hit-and-run and are later charged now face automatic punishments, which vary based on the damage done. If a hit-and-run causes a death, the penalties include a minimum of four years in prison (and a maximum of thirty years).
Florida Car Accident Lawyer
When you or someone close to you has been the victim of a hit-and-run crash, the costs can be high. The crash might involve only property damage, which can be relatively simple to deal with. But if you have been injured, there will be numerous expenses, from medical bills to lost wages to ongoing physical therapy, as well as others. It’s important to find the right help as you work to recover these expenses from the responsible parties.
At Lavent Law, we have years of experience practicing automobile accident law. Whether your case involves a hit-and-run or any other kind of car crash, we can help. Give us a call today at 305-440-0450 or contact us online through the form below to schedule a free consultation to discuss your situation.