Larry Laverde, a Miami-Dade County, Florida police officer, was arrested Tuesday after he was accused of drunkenly crashing into Fernando Monch’s vehicle and fleeing the scene, news sources report. Monch, 63, sustained unspecified injuries in the crash. Laverde, 30, was booked into the Miami-Dade County Jail on charges of driving under the influence, leaving the scene of an accident, and failing to render aid. It is unclear whether he qualified for a set bail bond amount. The press did not specify a defense attorney for Laverde.
According to reports, Laverde has worked for the Miami-Dade Police Department for the past seven years. There is no indication that he had ever been in trouble with the department before this incident. He has been suspended with pay while the department awaits the outcome of the trial, sources say. A spokesperson for the Miami-Dade department commented on the case, saying, “This officer’s actions tarnish the badge of every hard-working officer that puts his/her life on the line daily, while protecting and serving.”
Reports say the crash occurred Sunday morning near the corner of 127th Avenue and Southwest 56th Street in Miami. Monch was in his Mazda near the corner, and Laverde was travelling towards the corner in a “marked police vehicle.” Witnesses reportedly said the police car appeared to be “hauling butt” moments before it rear-ended Monch’s vehicle. The force of the collision allegedly caused Monch’s vehicle to spin several times before coming to a stop. Laverde allegedly continued on his way without stopping his vehicle.
When asked to comment about the accident, Monch reportedly said, “[It was] something crazy. Completely 100% irresponsible. They could have killed me. I am alive, because, I don’t know. Thank God.” Monch reportedly said there were two police vehicles involved in the crash, but reports indicate there was only one involved.
Monch was taken to a nearby hospital for treatment following the accident. It is unclear whether Laverde was injured. When Monch’s son, Phillip Monch, heard that it was an officer who struck his father’s car, he said, “I don’t know what to say. That’s pretty messed up,” reports indicate.
Laverde was not the only South Florida man accused of DUI hit-and-run this past week. Alan Alt of Margate was apprehended Monday after he was spotted speeding down Interstate 95 with his airbags deployed, sources report. Alt, 27, allegedly said he was in a crash with a friend and that he fled the scene. He was booked into the Palm Beach County Jail on charges of hit-and-run, resisting an officer, and driving under the influence. It is unclear whether he qualified for bail or hired legal representation.
The incident happened around 3:48 p.m. on Monday, reports say. An officer apparently witnessed Alt traveling around 90 miles per hour down Interstate 95 in Palm Beach Gardens with his airbags deployed, swerving in and out of the median. The officer pulled Alt over and found that Alt smelled of alcohol and showed signs of extreme drunkenness, such as vomiting and slurred speech, reports say. Alt reportedly admitted to being in a hit-and-run crash, but said his “friend” would not press charges.
Source: 8.15.13 Laverde Hit-and-Run.pdf