David Paul Blum of Boynton Beach, Florida was arrested on July 21 for allegedly leaving the scene of a crash that severely injured Florida Atlantic University (FAU) student Mitchell Johnson Reidy of Naples.
Blum, 51, faces charges for leaving the scene of a crash involving serious injury. He was booked into Palm Beach County Jail and was released the following the day on $30,000 bond. The press did not list an attorney for him.
According to the arrest report, the alleged crash occurred on the morning of February 24 on the 2400 block of North Military Trail, a few miles away from the FAU campus. Blum was reportedly driving on the northbound lanes when he struck Reidy, 19, who was on foot. The impact threw the FAU student at least 100 feet from where he was struck, the report said. He suffered serious head injuries and is reportedly in a coma. Blum later told investigators that he realized he hit something, but thought it was an animal.
Blum fled the scene and drove his 2017 Chevrolet Cruz for five miles before he left it in a parking lot, sources say. He returned with his wife the following day and they reportedly saw police surrounding the vehicle, which had extensive damage on its front end. They left without talking to law enforcement, the report said.
Friends of Reidy told investigators that the student had been drinking before the crash. His blood alcohol level was .214, which more than twice the legal limit of .08. It is unclear if this affected the outcome of the crash.
Another hit-and-run case was reported in Miami Beach last week. Red South Beach Hotel employee Angel Cuesta was arrested for allegedly causing a crash that killed a woman. He faces charges for leaving the scene of an accident involving a death. It is unclear if he has hired an attorney.
According to the arrest report, the crash occurred on July 16 at 38th and Collins Avenue. Cuesta reportedly took a 2017 Chevrolet Cruz from the Red South Beach Hotel’s valet station to buy a Red Bull at a nearby store. He drove for eight blocks before he struck a woman on a marked crosswalk, the report said. The pedestrian was rushed to Jackson Memorial Hospital’s Ryder Trauma Center, where she died a few hours later. Her identify has not been released.
Cuesta fled the scene of the crash and tried to hide the vehicle, which had extensive damage on the left front side and bumper, in a parking lot at 3535 Indian Creek. He reportedly never tried to contact police.
After his arrest Cuesta told investigators that he tried to avoid hitting the woman and saw her lying on the ground after he struck her, but he still did not stop.
“The defendant stated that he attempted an evasive maneuver to avoid the crash, however was unable to do so and struck the unknown pedestrian,” the report said. “The defendant was able to see the unknown victim lying on the ground as he drove away.”