Ald. Terry Witkowski
Press Release

Steady increase in hit-and-run crashes a troubling trend for Milwaukee

Public Safety and Health Committee to cover deadly topic on Thursday

By - Apr 24th, 2018 11:12 am

As Vice Chair of the Public Safety and Health Committee and former Safety Director for the City of Milwaukee, Alderman Terry L. Witkowski is concerned by the steady and substantial increase of hit-and-runs in Milwaukee over the last five years.

According to the Legislative Reference Bureau, hit-and-run crashes made up 24% of all crashes in Milwaukee in 2013; that percentage jumped to 29% as of 2017.

Alderman Witkowski said trend-lines suggest that hit-and-runs will continue to increase, further damaging the lives of city residents and the Milwaukee community. “It is shocking and reckless behavior, and the consequences for offenders are substantial,” the alderman said.

For hit-and-run drivers each offense carries severe penalties to deter such deviant behavior in the state of Wisconsin. Even if the victim suffered no injuries during the crash, hit-and-run drivers will receive a misdemeanor charge with a possible fine between $300 and $1,000 and up to 6 months in jail.

If the hit-and-run crash results in the victim’s death, perpetrators will be charged with a Class D felony with a possible fine up to $100,000 and up to 25 years in prison.

“The State of Wisconsin takes hit-and-runs seriously, and so should Milwaukee residents,” said Alderman Witkowski. “Hit-and-runs are not a victimless crime, and these crashes significantly impact the lives of city residents every day. The state penalties for hit-and-runs should serve as a reminder to drive safely and think twice before leaving the scene of an accident.”

The Public Safety and Health Committee will meet to discuss the issue and other matters at 9 a.m. on Thursday, April 26 in room 301-B at City Hall, 200 E. Wells St. The meeting will be televised live on Spectrum cable and AT&T U-Verse in the City of Milwaukee and by the City Channel via streaming video on the city website at www.city.milwaukee.gov/Channel25.

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