Monday, December 10, 2012

Police, family search for deadly hit-and-run driver

ORLANDO Aaron Jones, 28, was killed in a hit-and-run crash on Goldenrod Road on Friday Dec. 7. Family, friends and the Florida Highway Patrol are currently searching for information that leads to an arrest.

Jones was headed south riding
his small motorcycle on Goldenrod Road when he was fatally struck by an unidentified driver headed north on Goldenrod Road in a light colored four-door sedan, as the driver made an abrupt turn into the Jasmine Apartments.

Security camera footage from across the street confirmed that this accident occurred at 1:20 a.m., and according to FHP investigators the impact damaged the right-front side of the sedan.

Instead of helping Jones, the unidentified driver circled around the apartment complex entrance and headed back northbound on Goldenrod Road, according to FHP investigators.

An ambulance arrived on scene around 1:34 a.m., after another vehicle passing later stopped and called for 9-11 for help. Jones was taken to
the hospital where he passed away Friday around 4:30 a.m.

“I've spoken with my brother and his wife Tina and they’re doing as well as can be expected,” said Joni Brown, aunt of Aaron Jones on his fathers side. “It's hard, it's hard on anybody to loose your son. You don't want to bury your children.”

Family members, friends and other supporters were gathered at the crash scene on Sunday and Monday afternoon, holding signs asking for help to find the hit-and-run vehicle and handing out fliers to individuals as they entered the Jasmine Apartments.

There was also a memorial service held on Monday evening at the “Other Bar” where Jones work as a bar manager, were friends and supports shared their condolences and helped raise money for the family through a silent auction and other donations.

Some tips and other information has come in from local residents, but nothing that has lead to any kind of suspect arrest.

“We have looked at eight to 12 vehicles matching the description with front-end damage, but have been unable to confirm if they were the suspect vehicle,” said Sgt. Kim Montes, FHP investigator.

With no direct eyewitnesses, Montes said this case will rely on a solid lead that can tie the suspect with some circumstantial evidence.

Montes described Florida's hit-and-run crashes as an “epidemic,” with 696 hit-and-run reports last month in Central Florida handled by the FHP.

The punishment for a hit-and-run crash resulting in a death would apply to Florida's Justin McWilliams Act, which mandates a first degree felony charge punishable by a $10,000 fine, and up to 30 years in prison.

There is currently a $2,500 reward for anyone with information about this case that leads to a felony arrest, and they are encouraged to call Central Florida Crimeline at 800-423-TIPS.

By James Tutten 

Photo of Aaron Jones, provided by Jones' family.


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