A 16-year-old driving a car that was reported stolen has been charged with vehicular manslaughter and leaving the scene of an accident after a crash at the entrance to Miami Dade College's (MDC) Liberty City campus at Northwest Seventh Avenue. The collision killed one person and seriously injured three others.
According to witnesses, the driver of the four-door Lincoln sedan was speeding when the car went out of control, crashed into the entrance to the campus, and caught fire. Surveillance video shows the car hitting the building and bursting into flames. One witness said that the driver seemed to be trying to avoid hitting people standing at a nearby bus stop, but because of his speed, when he swerved to avoid them, he lost control and could not regain it in time to avoid hitting the building. The impact of the crash was so great that pieces of the car were found on the sidewalk and street.
After the crash, the teen, who did not have a driver's license, allegedly got out of the car via the sun roof, leaving his passengers, and got a ride home from a passing driver. When he got home, his family called an ambulance because of his injuries, which he said he had received in a fight. When his stepmother took him to the police later, he first denied his role in the accident. When they presented their evidence, including statements from witnesses and passengers of the car, he admitted to being the driver. However, he blamed the crash on a malfunctioning brake and steering mechanism.
With auto accidents, particularly serious ones, it seems as though the only way to make a bad situation even worse is to flee the scene. However, people panic and do it all too often. It seems as though this young man had plenty of reasons not to stick around. However, newspapers across the country are filled with stories of people who leave the scene of an accident, only to be captured sooner or later -- generally sooner -- and forced to face justice.
Source: Miami Herald, "Teen driver of deadly Miami Dade College crash charged with vehicular homicide" Gustavo Solis, Aug. 28, 2013