Daily Mail documented a story where the police launched a search for a cyclist who escaped from the scene after knocking down a pedestrian. This is not the face case since most drivers in Florida have a habit of fleeing or eluding the police when stopped from reckless driving. Some might have escaped with the first or second attempt, but when the law finally catches up with them, serious consequences await them.
Fleeing is a criminal offense that states that the driver ran away when the traffic officers ordered them to stop either for inspection or as a result of reckless driving. While simply fleeing or failing to stop can have lighter consequences, there are factors that can aggregate the offense.
- If the police activated the sirens and lights, but the driver did not stop
- The police chased the driver at high speed due to reckless driving
- The driver killed or injured someone while fleeing or eluding the police
Florida Statutes states that it is considered unlawful if a driver refuses to stop a motor vehicle when the police officers order them. Sometimes, the driver may stop then willfully elude. This will still be a criminal offense.
Whether the officers activate the lights and the sirens or not, refusing to stop attracts serious consequences, and the driver faces third-degree felony. Here are some consequences for such offenses.
- Five years of imprisonment.
- Suspension of driver’s license.
- Third-degree felony in case of aggregates such as sirens and lights.
The court shall not suspend, withhold or defer a case of eluding or eluding an officer. This means the driver will not get a pardon or a lesser charge even when they committed the offense for the first time.