A Miami-Dade Circuit Court Judge reduced charges against a 17-year-old Key Biscayne male accused in an alleged hit-and-run collision. The case is being transferred to County Court for prosecution as a misdemeanor, authorities said Wednesday.
Key Biscayne Police had initially charged the defendant with two felonies, leaving the scene of an accident with injuries and tampering with physical evidence. The Jan. 22 crash caused about $15,000 in damage to vehicles, police said at the time.
After reviewing the case, prosecutors determined that evidence did not support a felony prosecution, according to Ed Griffith, a spokesman for the State Attorney’s Office. Griffith said that prosecutors had determined there were no injuries, even though police reported that there were minor injuries and passengers in the defendant’s vehicle were taken to the hospital. The discrepancy in the two accounts was not explained.
The defendant has been in the custody of parents, a defense lawyer told a juvenile court proceeding earlier this month.
The Key Biscayne Independent does not publish the names of juvenile defendants who are not being prosecuted as adults.
Tony Winton is the editor-in-chief of the Key Biscayne Independent and president of Miami Fourth Estate, Inc. He worked previously at The Associated Press for three decades winning multiple Edward R. Murrow awards. He was president of the News Media Guild, a journalism union, for 10 years. Born in Chicago, he is a graduate of Columbia University. His interests are photography and technology, sailing, cooking, and science fiction.