Michael Brutus sentence to prison for 2016 fatal crash
On Tuesday afternoon, Michel Brutus, 25, was sentenced to 14 years in prison followed by 8 years of probation after pleading guilty this morning to one count of Leaving the Scene of a Crash Involving Death in Charlotte County, according to the Office of the State Attorney press release. Two people died in the crash. As part of the terms of his probation, Brutus must pay restitution to the families to pay for the funerals of the victims. He also has a lifetime driver’s license revocation.
The crime happened in December 2016 when the defendant was driving a car with two passengers on U.S. 41. The car went off the shoulder of the road into a ditch, hitting a road sign and a tree. The car went airborne and both passengers died on scene, per the press release. A female was still in her seatbelt in the passenger seat and a male was ejected from the car and laying in the parking lot. The defendant fled the scene right after the crash.
Florida Highway Patrol investigated the crash to determine who was driving. At first law enforcement on scene believed one of the deceased victims was the driver since Brutus had fled, the press release states. FHP Sergeant Derek Daniels led the investigation working with the prosecutors on the case. After reviewing the scene and examining the evidence it was apparent the driver’s side seatbelt had been in use. DNA from the driver’s side airbag connected Brutus to being the driver of the car at the time of the crash.