The Villages News reports that a daughter has finally seen justice in court after her father’s death resulting from a hit-and-run crash. On Tuesday, a Sumter County court sentenced 34-year-old Natem Stonic to five years in prison. The victim’s daughter, Jacqueline Noyes was in the courtroom when the sentence was handed down.
The victim, Theodore Chalifoux, was seriously injured in an accident that occurred on August 4, 2016. Chalifoux succumbed to his injuries on New Year’s Day in 2017. The accident happened on the Florida Turnpike at the exit for U.S. 301.
Turnpike video captured Stonic’s pickup truck with front-end damage. Noyes had fled the scene and later filed an accident claim with USAA, stating that he had been the victim of USAA.
After sentencing, Stonic was taken into custody and booked at the Sumter County Detention Center. He will be turned over to the Florida Department of Corrections.
Leaving the scene of an accident with property damage, injury, or death is against the law in Florida. Despite that, the Florida State Patrol has reported that three out of every five road fatalities involve pedestrians struck by a driver who then fled the scene. In Florida, hit-and-run involving death is a first-degree felony. The penalties if convicted include a minimum of a four-year prison sentence and as many as thirty years in prison. A person could also face up to thirty years of probation. The fine for the charge can be as high as $10,000.