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February 10, 2015

Driving is a responsibility. It’s something that comes with rights and privileges. If those responsibilities are not taken seriously, there can be consequences. That’s what happened to a Key Biscayne, Florida man.

On February 2, Alejandro Alvarez was driving a 2014 Volkswagen Jetta eastbound on Crandon Boulevard around 5:23 a.m. At the same time, two bicyclists were also traveling eastbound on the road in a designated bike lane. According to media reports, Alvarez looked down at his phone to change a song and was distracted from driving. He hit both bicyclists. In a panic, Alvarez fled the scene and drove to his parent’s house.

One of the bicyclists, 40-year-old Henry Hernandez, was transported to Mercy Hospital and was in serious condition. The other bicyclist, 51-year-old Walter Reyes, was pronounced dead at the scene.

Police officials say Alvarez tried to stage an accident and make it appear that his car had been stolen. He grabbed a golf club out of his parent’s garage, but changed his mind at the last minute. He instead called 911 and reported the accident. The 911 dispatcher told Alvarez to return to the accident.

At the accident, Alvarez approached an officer and told him that he was the one who had hit the bicyclist. The officer inquired about whether Alvarez had been drinking. He said no but the officer noticed that Alvarez slurred his speech, had bloodshot eyes and smelled of alcohol.

According to investigators, Alvarez, who is a student at the University of Maryland, said he had been out all night at a dance club. He had left the club at 4:30 a.m. and had driven to his parent’s house.

Alvarez was arrested and charged with DUI and manslaughter. He was freed on a $38,500 bond. He could also be charged under Florida’s Aaron Cohen Protection Act, which passed in 2012. Cyclist Aaron Cohen was struck and killed by a motorist, who fled the scene. The driver only served 364 days in jail. A law was passed that stiffens penalties for drivers who hit bicyclists and flee the scene. It’s unclear if the law applies in this case.

Florida car accident attorney James O. Cunningham has extensive experience representing the injured victims. For a free initial consultation, contact our law firm today at 888-FLA-AUTO (888-352-2886).

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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We have 15 convenient office locations around Central Florida to better serve our auto accident clients.

15 Florida Locations

Orange County:
Orlando, FL

500 Delaney Avenue #404
Orlando, FL 32801
Phone: 407-425-2000

Seminole County:
Lake Mary, FL

300 International Parkway #100
Lake Mary, FL 32746
Phone: 407-487-4408

Osceola County:
Kissimmee, FL

17 S. Orlando Ave.
Kissimmee, FL 34741
Phone: 407-966-4408

Volusia County:
Daytona Beach, FL

1301 Beville Rd., Suite 8
Daytona Beach, FL 32119
Phone: 386-243-4994

Volusia County:
DeBary, FL

465 Summerhaven Drive, Suite C
DeBary, FL 32713
Phone: 386-320-3911

Volusia County:
Deland, FL

120 South Woodland Blvd.
Deland, FL 32720
Phone: 386-206-1264

Citrus County:
Inverness, FL

110 North Apopka Ave.
Inverness, FL 34453
Phone: 352-205-4341

Polk County:
Lakeland, FL

1102 S. Florida Ave., Suite 104
Lakeland, FL 33803
Phone: 863-968-7551

Polk County:
Winter Haven, FL

325 Avenue A, N.W.
Winter Haven, FL 33881
Phone: 863-968-7173

Hillsborough County:
Tampa, FL

100 S. Edison St. Suite D
Tampa, FL 33606
Phone: 813-355-9772

Marion-Sumter Counties:
The Villages, FL

3420 U.S. Hwy. 27/441
Fruitland Park, FL 34731
Phone: 352-419-0825

Lake County:
Mt. Dora, FL

Mt. Dora, FL
Phone: 352-436-4696

Lake County:
Clermont, FL

3721 S Hwy 27, Suite A
Clermont, FL 34711
Phone: 352-503-4674

Brevard County:
Titusville, FL

506 S. Palm Ave.
Titusville, FL 32780
Phone: 321-222-7300

Brevard County:
Cocoa, FL

96 Willard Street, Suite 206
Cocoa, FL 32922
Phone: 321-757-1373

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  • I was involved in a motor vehicle accident where the other driver ran a red light and my car was a total loss. I was referred to James Cunningham due to the fact that our attorney’s have been very impressed with James Cunningham’s work. This fact turned out to be very true… A Personal Injury Client
  • My car accident case was handled by Mr Cunningham and I was very pleased with how everything was done. He handles his own cases and his staff is top notch. He got me a very nice settlement without going to court. Derek
  • We contacted Jim Cunningham to help guide us through the "maize" of possible outcomes in settling with insurance companies, medical bills, and even police investigation with the accident. David
  • Cunningham worked hard was professional, supportive, diligent and always maintained contact. I am very satisfied with the service that him and his team provided. Mr Cunningham is a lawyer that will work for you. Dezhaun
  • I consulted with several attorneys, but as soon as I met James Cunningham, I knew he was the right attorney for me. He immediately expressed concern for my well-being, and his compassionate, professional manner put me at ease. Diane