If you have been following ARONOVITZ LAW Blog posts over the past year, you know there has been an ongoing grassroots initiative, backed by legislative support, to impose tougher penalties on hit-and-run drivers.
Now that vital initiative—the Aaron Cohen Life Protection Act— is one step away from becoming law in Florida. After passing in the Senate by unanimous vote on March 26, the House voted 118-0 on April 22 to pass its version of the bill.
As one of the people who helped draft the legislation I believe this proposed law is necessary especially in the Miami area, which has experienced an alarming trend of hit-and-run accidents by eliminating an “incentive to flee the scene.”
Once this bill becomes law, people who hit and kill someone, and then flee the scene, will now be treated the same as a DUI manslaughter.
The bill guarantees a mandatory minimum jail sentence of four years for a driver convicted of leaving the scene of a fatal crash. Anyone leaving the scene of an accident that causes injury would face a minimum driver license revocation period of three years and additional driver education requirements.
The bill is called the Aaron Cohen Life Protection Act in memory of a Miami cyclist who was killed by a hit-and-run driver in 2012. It will now go to Gov. Scott for signing.