• Gov. Scott signs legislation to increase punishment for hit-and-run convictions


    FLORIDA - There's new legislation in Florida that increases the punishment for someone convicted of a hit-and-run crash.

    Gov. Rick Scott signed a bill making the minimum mandatory sentence four years.

    Travis Luque has made remarkable progress.

    "I can walk with my therapist right next to me, holding me," said Luque.

    Luque was seriously injured when a car hit him and his sister as they crossed East Colonial Drive near Dean Road in December.

    But his sister, Melanie Luque, died.

    Luque's mother, Tina Exposito said, "They took us to a small room and that's when they informed us both of my kids were hit by a vehicle and that my daughter had passed away on the scene and my son was critical."

    The driver of a Mercedes that Florida Highway Patrol troopers claim hit the brother and sister left the scene, and to this day, its driver hasn't been arrested.

    Kyla Holland and her mother, Nikki, are named in a wrongful death lawsuit as owners of the car.

    "My world, my family's world ended that day," Exposito said.

    Travis and Melanie's mother may take a little solace in a development from Tallahassee Tuesday.

    Scott signed the bill that increases the punishment for someone convicted of fleeing the scene of a hit-and-run crash involving injury or death.

    The mandatory minimum sentence is now four years, increased from about two years.

    The legislation is called the Aaron Cohen Life Protection Act, which was named after a Miami cyclist killed by a hit-and-run driver in 2012.

    That driver served less than two years in jail.

    Exposito said she hopes someday the penalties get even tougher.

    "The minimum of four years is still little," she said.

    Luque sees a therapist three times a week to help improve his mobility and speech.

    He turns 19 on Wednesday.

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