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Murder charges for texting while driving in Florida being proposed

3:37 PM, Feb 11, 2013   |    comments
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- Drivers could be charged with murder if their texting while driving causes a death under a proposed bill at the state Capitol.

Sen. Darren Soto is pushing the legislation along with Rep. Irv Slosberg, whose daughter was killed in a car crash.

The bill would allow prosecutors to charge drivers with vehicular homicide if they kill someone while texting behind the wheel. A conviction on that charge could result in a 15-year prison sentence.

Sen. Soto said his research shows drivers are getting charged with a wide variety of offenses for killing someone while texting and driving so he wants Florida to have equal justice.

"I was troubled by the fact that some folks merely got probation or a ticket. Certainly, we need more consistency and harsher punishments than that. We've seen in our research inconsistent results, everything from a ticket, to probation, to vehicular homicide and so we want to make sure that the punishment fits the crime."

Several texting-while-driving bills are up for debate in the upcoming legislative session.

Florida is one of the few states in the nation without any restrictions on texting behind the wheel.

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