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Miami Lawmakers Press For Tougher Hit And Run Penalties

A pair of South Florida lawmakers – State Senator Miguel Diaz de la Portilla (R-Miami) and Representative Bryan Nelson (R-Miami) – are co-sponsoring a bill to further discourage hit-and-run drivers.  Diaz de la Portilla said current law levies lighter penalties if drunk drivers flee the scene of an accident. 

“What we do is we make the penalty in this bill for the leaving the scene of an accident with death a minimum mandatory of four years, the same as DUI manslaughter.  That’s the heart of the bill – creating that proportionality between DUI manslaughter, and leaving the scene of an accident resulting in death,” Diaz de la Portilla said.

Lawmakers are calling the bill the Aaron Cohen Life Protection Act in honor of a Miami resident killed in a hit and run accident in 2012.

Nick Evans came to Tallahassee to pursue a masters in communications at Florida State University. He graduated in 2014, but not before picking up an internship at WFSU. While he worked on his degree Nick moved from intern, to part-timer, to full-time reporter. Before moving to Tallahassee, Nick lived in and around the San Francisco Bay Area for 15 years. He listens to far too many podcasts and is a die-hard 49ers football fan. When Nick’s not at work he likes to cook, play music and read.