Florida Teen Driver Charged After Leaving the Scene of a Deadly Accident
According to reporting from the Tampa Bay Times, a 16-year-old from Lakewood Ranch, Florida was arrested in relation to a deadly car accident. The Florida Highway Patrol reports that the accident occurred on Interstate 75 on March 29th, 2016. The driver of an eighteen wheeler collided with the rear of the teen’s vehicle and veered off on to the shoulder of the highway. Unfortunately, the eighteen wheeler flipped over, and the truck driver was killed. Florida Police were able to track down the teen driver and he was charged with leaving the scene of a deadly accident. That charge is a felony in Florida. Felony charges are very serious, anyone charged with a colony needs to contact an experienced Tampa felony defense attorney for immediate legal assistance.
Florida Law: Leaving the Scene of an Accident
After an automobile accident occurs, all drivers have legal obligations. If you are in an accident, Florida law compels you to:
- Remain at the scene;
- Provide personal identifying information; and
- If needed, help render and acquire medical assistance.
If you violate any of those legal duties, you may face trouble with Florida authorities. The penalties for leaving the scene of an accident will vary depending on the extent of the damage that occurred in the wreck.
Only property damage: In this scenario, leaving the scene of an accident is a second degree misdemeanor. It may not seem like that big of a deal to leave an accident when no one is injured. Do not misunderstand; it could land you in jail. The maximum sentence for this violation is up to sixty days in jail. You will also incur significant fines.
An injury occurred: First, your license will be immediately revoked. Further, in this situation, you can be charged with a third degree felony. This type of felony can result in up to five years in prison. It will also carry substantial financial penalties.
A death occurred: Once again, your license will be automatically revoked. Further this type of felony charge needs to be taken very seriously. If this happens to you, please call an experienced Tampa felony defense lawyer right away. A first degree felony charge for leaving the scene of an accident can result in up to thirty years in state prison.
Remember, it does not matter that you were responsible for the accident. That issue will be litigated at a later time. You have an obligation to remain at the scene regardless. That being said, everyone makes mistakes. It is easy to panic in a situation like that. You need an experienced Florida defense attorney who will fight for your rights.
Contact An Experienced Tampa Felony Defense Attorney
We understand that it is very intimidating to be charged with a felony. Florida takes all felony crimes, including leaving the scene of an accident that resulted in a major injury, very seriously. At The Pawlowski//Mastrilli Law Group in Tampa, we will comprehensively investigate your case and work hard to protect your rights. If you have been charged with a felony in Florida, please contact our Tampa Bay office today to schedule a free legal consultation.