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Mother Calls to Strengthen Hit & Run Punishment - KOAM TV 7

Mother Calls to Strengthen Hit & Run Punishment

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SOUTHWEST, MISSOURI -

Matthew Stevens funeral was September 17th. The driver who hit and killed him will stand before a judge this Wednesday for a pre-trial conference.

"It's hard. I miss him," Matthew's Mother Stacey Stevens said. "It's Christmas and my son should be here."

The prosecutor in the case told Stacey unless it can be proved the driver who killed Matthew was drunk or committing another crime, he may only be charged with felony leaving the scene of an accident. Which carries a max sentence of 4 years in prison and a $5,000 fine in Missouri.

"$5,000 fine," Stacey said. "It cost $10,000 to bury my son."

Now she's gathering support for a petition on change.org to pressure lawmakers to propose mandatory sentences, higher fines, and a minimum 3 to 5 year suspension or revocation of licenses for hit and runs leading to death.

One politician she's reached out to, Representative Bill Reiboldt of Neosho, spoke to her for the first time Monday. 

"I am concerned about the hit and run situation," Reiboldt said. Going as far to say he would collaborate with Stacey to write legislation.

It's something Stacey says she wants, not to punish the man who hit her son, but help future parents, like her.

"It's just not justice for our loved ones," Stacey said. "There's a lack of responsibility. And a willful disregard for human live. My son deserved better than to be left dead on a highway."

Reiboldt told us that he'll look for legal expertise regarding hit-and-run law.

A link to Stacey's Steven's petition can be found HERE.

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