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Driver Cleared of Hit-and-Run Charges in Fatal Merritt Island Accident

By Orlando Auto Accident Lawyer on July 30, 2018

A few weeks ago, we reported on a car accident that happened on Merritt Island and resulted in the death of one motorist and critical injury of another.  At the time of our initial article, the official line from police working on Merritt Island was that the accident was an instance of road rage.  Two cars, one a Ford Mustang and the other a Chevy Malibu, were seen break checking one another as they traveled along State Road 528.  After this, the initial reports suggested that the Malibu struck the rear of the Mustang, causing the driver of the Mustang to lose control of their vehicle.  In the following moments, the Mustang left the eastbound lanes and entered the westbound lanes while still traveling in an eastern direction.  It then collided head-on with an SUV, resulting in fatal injuries to the Mustang’s 58-year-old driver and critical injuries to the 26-year-old passenger.

The sequence of events is not clear, but either before or after the Mustang crashed into the SUV the driver of the Malibu sped away from the scene.  This resulted in police with the Florida Highway Patrol beginning a potentially rigorous search for the person behind the wheel of the Malibu.  Their efforts were quickly rewarded however and this individual was either discovered or voluntarily handed themselves in to the police.

Before the case even reached trial, the lawyer working for the driver of the Mustang procured video evidence of the incident.  It is not clear if the video comes from surveillance footage or from a personal recording device, but according to the investigative report it clearly shows that the driver of the Mustang lost control of their vehicle without it ever being touched by the Chevy Malibu.  Therefore, regardless of the aggressive actions that may or may not have been perpetrated by the Malibu’s driver, the accident is not considered their fault and they are no longer being treated as instigators of a hit-and-run.

The investigation continues to move forward, although the driver of the Malibu is no longer being held as the person responsible for the collision, injury, and fatality that resulted after their interaction with the Mustang.

James O. Cunningham

Since 1977, personal injury lawyer James Cunningham has provided effective legal advocacy to people who are injured through the negligent actions of another person or entity throughout the Central Florida area. He fights to obtain recoveries for his clients’ physical and emotional pain and suffering and pursues his clients’ personal injury cases with a commitment to excellence and impeccable preparation.

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