SARASOTA COUNTY, Fla. — The month of February is hit-and-run awareness month in Florida.
According to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, data shows that there were 104,895 hit-and-run crashes in the state last year.
Out of those crashes, 266 of them were fatalities.
A Sarasota County family shared their personal story with 10 Tampa Bay. In August 2022, 13-year-old Lilly Glaubach was hit by a driver while riding her bike home from school.
“None of it seemed real and we were driving up to the hospital saying her leg must be badly broken or something like that,” said Lilly’s step-dad, Paul Alexander.
The man accused of hitting Lilly and leaving the scene is David Chang. Alexander says there were no signs Chang tried to press the brakes after hitting Lilly. He says Chang’s actions after the incident are even harder to understand.
“He made the decision to drive to Tampa with a hole in his windshield to say a tree fell on his car,” he explained.
A judge will soon make a decision on how much time Chang will serve. In the meantime, Lilly’s family is hoping to get justice.
“There should be a harsher sentence for someone who’s running and has a disregard for human life,” said Lilly's mom, Sarah.
Out of the 104,895 hit-and-run crashes in 2022 in Florida, 144 involved pedestrians and 50 involved bicyclists, according to FLHSMV.
If you ever have information on a hit-and-run crash, you can report it by calling *FHP (*347) or report it anonymously to Florida Crime Stoppers at 800-873-8477 (TIPS).
Correction: This story has been updated to reflect there were 104,895 hit-and-run crashes in 2022 in Florida; 515,957 hit-and-run crashes were reported in the past five years, according to FLHSMV data. According to an agency press release, 144 of the deadly hit-and-run crashes in 2022 involved pedestrians and 50 were bicyclists.
The video has been removed from this story as it mentioned erroneous data.