My son and husband went out for dinner on July 22nd 2o11, They were stopped at a red light at CR 419 and Highway 50 in East Orlando. The light for east bound Highway 50 turned red and the light for those on Clumbia School Road turned green.
Traffic proceeded through the intersection and their light turned yellow then red. Then the light to give my husband the right of way turned green. He was in a multi-directional lane going straight while others were turning to go east on Highway 50
According to witnesses on the scene the man who hit my husband was travelling at a very high rate of speed on Highway 50 and never attempted to stop, slow down or swerve when he saw traffic moving from the other direction across the highway.
When questioned he told the officers he had the green light contradicting what every other witness on the scene had said.
There was a woman stoopped at Highway 50 eastbound who had been sitting there waiting to go for over 30 seconds she estimated and saw him coming but had no way of warning anyone.
My son was pronounced dead on the scene and we later learned from the autopsy report that he had multiple skull fracture, brain trauma, multiple fractured ribs, a lacerated liver and spleen and multiple lacerations on his body. My husband suffered from a traumatic brain injury, multiple fractured ribs, collapsed lungs and a laceration on his liver. He now has memory loss and nerve damage as a result of this accident.
We were told all along the man responsible for the accident would face criminal charges but FHP made the decision to only charge him with a traffic citation for failure to follow traffic control devices which is a 164 dollar penalty.
They said that he committed no other crime when running the red light and that my son's death was just the result of an accident. I would like to see the laws changed so that if you run a red light where you are clearly at fault that involves serious bodily injuries or death to another person you are charged criminally and not just issued a citation.
The citation is the result of running a red light but does not address the serious bodily injuries to my husband or the death of my child.
Video link to see the accident and interview with my husband and daughter:
There are already laws in place to charge people in situations such as this if running a red light would be considered reckless driving. It would hopefully reduce red light running and maybe save some lives if that law was amended to include red light running as reckless driving in circumstances such as this.
I urge you to look into creating a law which allows police to charge people criminally who cause accidents with fatalities and/or serious bodily injuries by driving aggressively and running red lights. Matthew Knorr at the age of 17 was killed by such a driver by the name of Brandon Benton. Brandon Benton was only given a civil traffic infraction because Florida Highway Patrol has reported he committed no crime while running the red light. Matthew Knorr was killed as a direct result of Brandon Benton running the red light and that should be considered a criminal offense of vehicular homicide or reckless driving with a fatality involved. I urge you to create this law in the name of Matthew Knorr so that his death will not be in vain and other families will not have to suffer the pain of being told that there is nothing that can be done to someone who so recklessly takes a person's life.