A six-year old Sunny Isles Beach boy was riding his bike home from a friend’s house, about a block away, when he was struck by a car.
The posted speed limit inside the community is 9 miles per hour. The driver of the vehicle allegedly did not stop. A neighbor who found the boy in the middle of the road.
The incident happened in Golden Gate Estates, an upscale gated development across the street from the beach. There is only one way in and one way out of the community, and there are several security cameras that record the vehicles entering and exiting the complex. Sunny Isles police officers are reviewing the security video.
Leaving the scene of an accident with serious bodily injury (LSA with SBI) is a third-degree felony punishable by a maximum of 5 years in prison.
Police officers will check the surrounding homes to see if any of the residents' cars show signs of damage. They will also question residents to see if anybody saw anything.
Many LSA cases are put together by police and prosecutors due to the confessions of alleged drivers. Under no circumstances should an accused driver in an LSA case make a statement to the police without first consulting with a criminal defense attorney. Many times, the physical evidence doesn't make the case. The police need that confession in order to arrest you. Without it, they may night have a case against you. Even if it's filed, it will be weak and likely to be thrown out or result in a not guilty verdict.
While nobody likes the idea of a young boy being hit by a car, accidents happen, and people panic and make poor decisions. You should never leave the scene of an accident. An accident is exactly that...an accident. Even one where somebody is severely injured, or even killed. As long as the driver is not impaired by drugs or alcohol, was not driving recklessly, or was not driving with a suspended license, there is no crime. There may be tickets issued and a lawsuit, but it is much better to end up in traffic court and in civil court than in criminal court facing serious charges.
If you are in a traffic accident and somebody is hurt, don't leave. Call 911 and wait for help to arrive. If you do panic and leave the scene, you should understand that you have just committed a crime and are now facing an arrest. You may want to call an attorney to discuss what to do next.
Eric Matheny is a criminal defense attorney serving Miami-Dade and Broward. Call today to discuss your case.