Deputy Who Caused Crash Will not Be Cited
Orlando Police Say Scott Stephenson Ran Red Light

Posted 8:6:12 pm EDT August 21, 2009

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. -- An Orange County Sheriff's deputy who caused a multi-car crash that sent some people to the hospital will not be ticketed.

Deputy Scott Stephenson ran a red light earlier this month in his patrol car, causing multiple collisions involving four vehicles, which sent several people to the hospital. The Orlando Police Department said its report is finished. The report says the deputy was at fault but is not going to be ticketed, instead leaving the deputy's punishment in the hands of the sheriff's office.

The sheriff's office said was not responding to a call when he ran the light Aug. 4.

"If it was everybody else, they would get a ticket so it should be the same for everybody," victim Lue Martin said.

Martin was hospitalized with back and neck injuries.

"If you want me to abide by the rules of the road, you should too," he said. "You know, whatever you expect me to do, I expect you to do the same thing."

Martin's attorney said Orlando police give the appearance of protecting another law enforcement agency.

"They can't be prejudiced about it," Mark NeJame said. "They can show that they have a standard that only applies to them because they've got a badge and a gun and a uniform."

Florida law demands red light runners face a $211 fine, four points on their license and mandatory driver improvement in cases where victims go to hospitals.

Also, Florida Highway Patrol Policy says: "If an officer violates a traffic law, when not conducting law enforcement action, they will be ticketed."

The Florida Civil Rights Association said it is asking for an additional investigation to find out if the deputy was talking on the cell phone, texting or using his laptop at the time of the collision.