(WSVN) - She was on her way home when it happened — a driver smashed into her car and fled. She wanted law enforcement to do everything in their power to catch the guy, but it brought up a question: Do they have to do everything? And it’s why she called Help Me Howard with Patrick Fraser.
When we met Rose Sosa, she was driving a new car.
Rose Sosa, hit-and-run victim: “Yeah, it’s a nice car. It’s a little tank.”
Rose wanted a car she considered a tank because of what happened a few days ago.
Rose Sosa: “Someone just took the red light and slammed into me at about 50 miles per hour.”
As Rose was heading west on Kendall Drive, a man ran the red light and smashed into the driver side of her car. The air bags released.
Rose Sosa: “He destroyed the door, and I was stuck. I couldn’t get out. A couple of people came and asked me if I was OK, and then someone was able to open it forcefully so that I could get out of the car.”
As people came to help Rose, they say they noticed the driver of the car that hit Rose pulled over.
The Florida Highway Patrol sent us pictures taken by witnesses that, they say, show the black Chevy Sonic and the man who was behind the wheel.
The driver, wearing gloves, got out of his car, but he wasn’t checking on Rose. He was checking to see the damage to his car.
Rose Sosa: “What type of human being are you to just hit somebody, and take off and not know even if they’re OK?”
After the man drove away, the Florida Highway Patrol showed up, and Rose showed them the pictures of the car and the driver.
Rose Sosa: “I thought, ‘Oh my God. I think we can get him with these photos.'”
But her hopes were smashed like her car.
Rose Sosa: “Maybe somebody knows him, or maybe you can enhance these photos to see the tag of the car. And he told me no, that those were things that I would see on TV, that the Florida Highway Patrol doesn’t do that stuff.”
This is the guy witnesses said drove away, but Rose doesn’t want him to get away with what he did.
Rose Sosa: “I wanna catch this guy. I want the Florida Highway Patrol to maybe go and look at some red-light cameras.”
Well, Howard, every victim wants law enforcement to do everything they can to investigate their case, but do they have to?
Howard Finkelstein, 7News legal expert: “No, they don’t. Law enforcement has a lot of discretion in what they investigate and limited resources, so they have to prioritize. In other words, if they have to chose between a fatal car accident and an accident without injuries, they have to focus on the more serious crime. That’s reality.”
If you zoom into the pictures of the car, the tag number is too blurry to read.
We tried to enhance it in our post-production room. Again, no luck.
There is a camera that the hit-and-run driver had to go by on 97th Avenue and Kendall Drive, but Miami-Dade County told me it’s for monitoring traffic and does not record video.
The trooper investigating the hit-and-run wrote, “All leads have been exhausted. The investigation is now closed.”
But he added, “If any further information becomes available, the investigation will be open and the appropriate charges will be filed.”
That’s what Rose wants.
Rose Sosa: “Anybody out there, do you recognize him? Please contact us, because he really deserves to pay for what he’s done.”
Rose is hoping someone recognizes the guy driving a black Chevy Sonic. He was the bad that happened to her that day — and then there was the good: the people who stopped to help.
Rose Sosa: “The witnesses were fantastic. I have their numbers. I’m actually going to call again and thank them, because they were actually good Samaritans.”
As I like to say, most South Floridians are wonderful people — and then you have those like the person who smashed into Rose. If you recognize the black Chevy Sonic that witnesses said ran into her, or the driver who, they say, was wearing gloves when he is accused of slamming into her, get in touch with the Florida Highway Patrol or us, and let the troopers talk to him.
Taken a hit in your life and wanna run from it? Ready for a smashing success? Contact us. ‘Cause it’s no accident that we’re able to solve a few problems.
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