Personal Injury Attorney With Joyce And Reyes Deplores Hit-and-Run That Killed Two Teens
Tampa, FL (Law Firm Newswire) November 8, 2013 - Two Tampa teens were killed and another was seriously injured when the moped they were riding was struck on a recent Sunday.
Cameron Maddox, 19, was driving his moped with two passengers aboard – Michael Garcia, 16, and Claudia Gelpi, 14. The trio were northbound on Dale Mabry Highway approaching Busch Boulevard at about 11:30 p.m. when a 2010 Hyundai Accent, driven by Amanda Angelica Diaz, 23, struck them from behind.
“A number of risk factors were at play in this accident,” said Tampa personal injury attorney Robert Joyce. “It was late at night, and a young driver was at the wheel of the car that struck the moped. To complicate matters, the moped was carrying three people, which it almost certainly was not designed to do. And finally, though reports are not clear on this, it is likely that some or all of the three were not wearing helmets.”
All three of the teens were thrown onto the road, and Gelpi was run over by a Kia Optima in the adjacent lane. She died at the scene. Garcia was pronounced dead at St. Joseph's Hospital. Maddox was reported to be in serious condition at the same hospital the following Monday.
The Florida Highway Patrol said that Diaz fled the scene of the accident and was later found at her home. Her license was suspended in September, 2013, for failure to obtain liability insurance, and had not been reinstated. According to Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles records, she was involved in two accidents in 2012 that were investigated by law enforcement. She has received one citation for careless driving and two for speeding.
Investigators said they found no indication alcohol was a factor.
“A hit-and-run accident is deplorable,” Joyce added. “Anyone is capable of making a mistake, but when you make them, you have to take responsibility for them. Drivers rarely escape responsibility by fleeing the scene. Instead, they only make things worse for themselves.”
Joyce also explains Florida's helmet laws.
“Most mopeds are powerful enough that motorcycle helmet laws apply to them,” Joyce said. “That means that operators and passengers must wear helmets unless they meet certain insurance requirements and are at least 21 years old. The three riders in this accident were probably required by law to wear helmets. As a personal injury attorney, I see far too many cases of people with catastrophic head injuries from riding without helmets, and I recommend riders wear helmets at all times.”
Joyce and Reyes Law Firm, P.A.
307 S Hyde Park Ave
Tampa, FL 33606
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