Speeding Miami Cop To Cop Plea Deal Next Month
South Florida Crime
FORT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – A Miami police officer caught on a Florida Highway Patrol officer’s dash cam speeding down the Turnpike will take a plea deal at a hearing next month.
According to assistant state attorney David Schulson, Officer Fausto Lopez will plead no contest at a hearing on April 3rd to a charge of reckless driving.
He was expected in court Tuesday but the hearing was pushed back a few weeks.
The reckless driving charge, which is a misdemeanor, carries a maximum sentence of 90 days in jail. However, Lopez will not receive any jail time as long as he pays court costs in excess of $3,000.
Lopez was clocked by State Trooper Donna Jane Watts doing 120 mph on October 11, 2011. When he finally pulled over, she arrested the uniformed officer at gunpoint, although reports came out later that a supervisor had told her to “back off” and not pull Lopez over. Lopez later said he was on his way to an off-duty assignment.
She told state investigators that she continued to follow his squad car because she feared the vehicle was stolen since she believed no officer would drive so fast and so dangerously.
Video of the 7-minute pursuit made national news and ignited a firestorm between his department and the Florida Highway Patrol.
The Miami Police Department has held off disciplining the 6-year-police veteran until his court case is resolved.