Hit-and-runs spark calls for tougher penalties for drivers

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By: Associated Press

ANDERSON, Ind. (AP) — Authorities and families of victims are calling for tougher penalties for drivers who flee accident scenes.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says nearly 20 percent of the more than 4,700 pedestrians killed in the U.S. in 2012 were involved in hit-and-run crashes. Indiana saw more than a half-dozen hit-and-runs in June that killed or seriously injured people.

Madison County Sheriff Scott Mellinger tells The Herald Bulletin he has seen an increase in the number of drivers who he says “have no consideration for others.” Madison County saw 48 hit-and-runs in 2014, up from 34 in 2010.

Leigh Ann Schattner’s 26-year-old daughter, Keri Lynn Winningham, died after being struck by a hit-and-run driver last fall. Schattner says the justice system failed her after the driver received home detention.