The Florida Highway Patrol says there were more than 100,000 hit and run crashes in the state last year alone. That left more than 1,200 people seriously hurt. Among them, a 13-year-old boy, from eastern Hillsborough County whose injuries will heal, but the driver who struck him is still on the loose. Highway Patrol Sergeant Steve Gaskins says people drive off for any number of reasons.
Gaskins said, “Some of them simply they don’t want to wait around for the cops to show up. And that kind of mentality, that behavior, because we have people leaving the scene, they’re not even at fault in the crash. And the worst-case scenario, you might be looking at a traffic ticket, in most cases.”
Gaskins says across the state, there are now officers dedicated to specifically tracking down “hit and run” drivers. And that could mean a minimum mandatory sentence of four years behind bars, if the driver who bolted is caught.