Articles Posted in Crime Victim’s Rights

MIAMI, FL (September 2, 2016) – Miami-Dade Police confirmed this past week that an 8-year-old girl died two days after being shot in the head during a drive-by shooting outside a northwest Miami-Dade home. According to news reports, the young girl was shot when two men pulled up in a black Ford sedan and started shooting.

No arrests have been made. Detectives are looking for the two men seen driving the getaway car. This happened in an area known for crime. crimescene

Homeowners and communities may have a responsibility to protect their residents and guests from crime which is foreseeable or preventable. Unless we hold these people responsible, crime may continue to put our kids and neighbors at risk of death or serious bodily injury.

Nearly every day in the news we hear about someone getting shot and killed in an apartment complex in Florida. Even more heartbreaking, is when the killer is never found, leaving the family seemingly without any means of pursuing justice for their loved one’s death.

So what could a family do if their loved one is shot to death in an apartment complex?Police Line

Remember that there may be two separate cases: the criminal case and the civil case. Most often, families focus on the criminal investigation. It is usually a frustrating process because the police are seeking to arrest a criminal for committing a crime against the state of Florida. They are not necessarily concerned about the rights of the victim. A victim in a criminal case is often looked at as a witness as opposed to an actual party to the case. If the police have no leads, they may not aggressively pursue the case at all. That may leave the family feeling helpless as if there are no other options. But there are.

CBS in Miami recently reported that two people were shot in the same apartment complex that 6 year old King Carter was murdered just months prior. According to CBS, a man and woman were rushed to the emergency room at Jackson Memorial Hospital after shots were fired at a northwest Miami-Dade apartment complex at night.

“The two victims were outside of the apartment complex when the shooter opened fire striking both victims,” said Miami-Dade police Det. Marjorie Eloi. “One victim was struck in the head and the second victim was struck in the shoulder and left arm.”

crimesceneCBS reported that the shooting happened at the Blue Lake Village apartment complex off NW 12th avenue and 103rd Lane – the same apartment complex where 6-year-old King Carter was shot and killed in February. King’s father ducked for cover, he said, after he heard about 20 shots.

The Law Offices of Jason Turchin recently settled a wrongful death case for more than $4,000,000.00 on behalf of the family of a young man who was struck and killed by a hit and run driver. The young man was on the street when, according to witnesses, he was struck by a vehicle and thrown through the air. He was in a coma and taken off life-support a few days later.

Florida’s complex Florida wrongful death law sets forth when a victim’s family may have a claim, who may bring the claim, and what damages each family member may be entitled to recover.

Who can bring a wrongful death claim in Florida?

The purpose of this article is not to give you a sugar buzz kill, but rather to give a brief overview of the possible personal injury and accident cases which could arise on Halloween. We want you and your children to be safe, just as we want to protect our own children.

As a child, I remember trick or treating for hours, year after year. As a candy lover, this was my favorite holiday. It is one, however, which I now realize after having handled more than 4,500 personal injury and accident cases, that comes with many risks.

1. Your neighbor may want to molest your child. Ok this sounds extreme, but there are registered child molesters in many local neighborhoods. Check your local, state or national registry before knocking on their door. The national registry is http://www.nsopw.gov. Also, just be aware that the registry only lists those sexual predators who were caught and convicted. According to a U.S. Department of Justice’s National Crime Victimization Survey, an estimated 200,000+ people are sexually assaulted every year, or one every 2 minutes. Every year, I represent many victims of child molestation and investigate the cause or contributing factors which could have prevented the assaults.

Allachua County, Florida – Florida Highway Patrol reported a series of fatal multi-car accidents in I-75 in Alachua County which killed 10 and injured at least 18 others. The initial trigger of the accidents was thought to be from poor visibility from smoke.

Despite the poor visibility, the drivers still has an obligation to use reasonable care. As a result of the negligence of one or more drivers, several drivers and passengers were killed and severely injured. The Florida Highway Patrol said involved at least 12 passenger cars and about seven semi trucks. alachua truck accident lawyer.jpg

Most of the collisions were on Interstate 75, said Alachua County Sheriff’s Office Sgt. Todd Kelly, with other crashes occuring on U.S. Highway 441.

The interstate’s northbound and southbound lanes remained closed Sunday afternoon, and would stay closed until the roadways are cleared, the Florida Highway Patrol said. Traffic was being detoured.

“It was just so crazy,” said one Gainesville resident. “We were just sitting in the car and all of this came out of nowhere.”

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Fort Lauderdale, FL – Many Florida personal injury lawyers shy away from liquor liability claims and pursue only the underlying accident or injury case. If a drunk driver hits or kills someone, many injury attorneys will only pursue claims against the drunk driver or any possible uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage. Inquiry into the accident should not stop there. beer.jpg

Liability in Florida for serving alcohol to minors or alcoholics
Florida has a Dram Shop Act which may impose liability on bars, restaurants and homeowners if certain provisions are met.

Florida Statute section 768.125 states that a person who sells or furnishes alcoholic beverages to a person of lawful drinking age shall not thereby become liable for injury or damage caused by or resulting from the intoxication of such person, except that a person who willfully and unlawfully sells or furnishes alcoholic beverages to a person who is not of lawful drinking age or who knowingly serves a person habitually addicted to the use of any or all alcoholic beverages may become liable for injury or damage caused by or resulting from the intoxication of such minor or person.

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What should I do if my attorney closes my accident or injury case?

We often get calls or email submissions from accident victims and families of wrongful death victims who were dropped by their prior attorney, and who believe they were hurt by someone else’s negligence. They want us to take their case.

Lawyers drop cases for a variety of reasons, so don’t be discouraged if your lawyer drops your case. Reasons include:

BillofRights.jpgMolestation Victims May Pursue Civil Claims
As the smoke starts to clear on the Penn State-Sandusky molestation claims, Syracuse University molestation accusations, and other recent child molestation claims, one major victory for me as a crime victim’s rights advocate is that the public is seemingly more aware that victims have rights to pursue civil claims as crime victims.

Florida has a comprehensive crime victim’s rights law. The law ranges from the rights in criminal proceedings, to victim’s compensation, to Florida’s Constitution, to civil claims for crime victims.

What types of compensation can a crime victim recover in Florida?

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On Sunday, January 2, 2011, Robert Wissler, 25, was driving a Honda Civic when the vehicle was struck by a van allegedly driven by Cedric Levon Williams. The severe impact caused Wissler’s vehicle to strike a street light, killing him and two passengers and injuring a fourth.

According to police, Williams fled the scene after the crash and failed to help or render aid. While the driver will now face criminal charges, the families of those who lost loved ones will be changed forever. Florida’s wrongful death and auto accident law permit the families to bring their own claim against Williams for the wrongful death of their children.

Florida law may also allow the families to pursue punitive damages against Williams for his apparent willful, wanton disregard for the safety of the public.

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