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Police charge man in fatal May accident

Authorities said a Miami man who left the scene of a car crash and then caused another turned himself in. They issued a warrant for his arrest a few days earlier. The charges he faces from the fatal accident include vehicular homicide, driving under the influence-manslaughter, DUI-serious bodily injury and four counts of DUI-property damage, plus leaving the scene of an accident from the first incident.

Florida State Highway Patrol officials said the accident took place on U.S. 1. The defendant was initially a passenger in a 2007 Honda Element driven by a 22-year-old woman, also from Miami. As she pulled out on U.S. 1 headed north, she struck another car around mile marker 85. She reportedly offered the other driver money in lieu of insurance information, which he refused. While the other driver was retrieving something from his car, she traded places with her passenger. He took off driving north in the left-turn lane, crossed over into the southbound lanes and struck a taxi head-on.

Firefighters freed the pair, and medical personnel transported them by helicopter to a hospital where the woman died that night. The accident happened in Tavernier on May 13. Authorities issued an arrest warrant on Sept. 17. The man surrendered at Plantation Key jail on Sept. 19, where police arrested him and held him on $155,000 bond. One of the victim's friends said her death was especially shocking because the woman strongly disapproved of drunk driving.

Losing a loved one is painful. A wrongful death lawyer could examine the details of an accident, and hire experts to help build a case against all negligent parties. A lawyer could also help the family to pursue a claim for monetary losses for the value of someone's life, and compensation for other losses, including the loss of companionship.

Source: Miami Herald, "Miami man charged in fatal switch-seat crash in the Keys ", September 20, 2013

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