Thirty-year old Jonathan Steve Diaz wanted to make a new life for himself in Florida. He was raised in New York City, but moved to Orlando six months ago with his girlfriend and her two children. He had gotten a job at Disney World and had been reunited with family members who lived in the area.
That ended tragically on January 13th when Diaz was killed in a drunk-driving accident, according to media reports.
Around 11:30 p.m., Diaz was driving home from work in a 1996 Toyota Camry when he was rear-ended on Winter Garden Vineland Road near Lake Buena Vista by a 2009 BMW 328i driven by 30-year-old Gina M. Estrada. Diaz’s car hit a curb. That caused Diaz’s vehicle to spin out of control, and it slammed into a concrete wall. Diaz was killed instantly and was pronounced dead at the scene.
According to law enforcement officials, Estrada fled on foot with a male passenger, leaving her vehicle at the scene of the accident. Neither Estrada nor the passengers in her vehicle were injured in the accident. A witness pointed law enforcement in the direction that Estrada fled. They later found Estrada and she was arrested and transported to the Orange County Jail. Another passenger in the vehicle was discovered hiding in a bush.
Law enforcement officials say alcohol was a factor in the accident. They drew blood from Estrada and sent the sample to a laboratory. The results should be available in six to eight weeks.
Estrada was charged with leaving the scene of an accident with death and DUI manslaughter with failure to render aid. She posted a $15,000 bond. Estrada faces over 30 years in prison if her blood alcohol level is over 0.08, the legal limit in Florida. DUI Manslaughter is a first-degree felony in Florida and leaving the scene of an accident can increase the length of the sentence. Under the statute, a person violates the law when he or she leaves the scene of an accident and knew or should have known that the accident caused injury and failed to give aid.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a hit and run or DUI related accident, contact us today at 877-FL-INJURY (877-354-6587) for a free initial consultation.
James O. Cunningham
Since 1977, personal injury lawyer James Cunningham has provided effective legal advocacy to people who are injured through the negligent actions of another person or entity throughout the Central Florida area. He fights to obtain recoveries for his clients’ physical and emotional pain and suffering and pursues his clients’ personal injury cases with a commitment to excellence and impeccable preparation.
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