Florida has followed the lead of many states in enacting what is known as hit-and-run laws. These laws state that when a driver is involved in an accident, every vehicle involved is supposed to stop and exchange information and contact the police. When there are injuries, they are also required to render aid or contact 911 for an ambulance. Failure to take these steps can result in serious criminal penalties. This is especially true if the injuries are serious or have resulted in death. Leaving the scene of this kind of accident can be charged as a first-degree felony. This charge comes with a penalty of up to 30 years in prison and a $10,000 fine.
North Escambia.com reports that two juvenile pedestrians were seriously injured in a hit-and-run accident on Quintette Road.
The accident happened last Monday night as the teens walked west along Quintette Road approaching Carrington Lake Boulevard.
58-year-old Robert William Etheridge of Cantonment was driving a Ford Escape. He struck the teens. The force of the impact threw one of the victims onto the hood and the windshield. The second victim was thrown about 65 feet onto the right shoulder.
Both teens sustained critical injuries in the accident. They were both transported to Sacred Heart Hospital in critical condition. One of them required being airlifted due to their injuries.
Etheridge fled the scene. He later contacted the Florida Highway Patrol and reported hitting a deer in the same area as the crash.
Charges are pending against Etheridge according to the Florida Highway Patrol.