NORTH FORT MYERS, Fla. — A memorial for Alana Tamplin still stands on Durrance Rd in North Fort Myers. An incident report from Florida Highway Safety & Motor Vehicles shows Mary Miller was behind the wheel of the car that struck and killed 12-year-old Tamplin in 2019.
And, just days ago, Miller was involved in yet another crash.
Tamplin’s mom, Sarah Tamplin says Miller didn’t show remorse after her child’s death.
“Clearly, there couldn’t have been [any], if it’s happening again. If you can’t learn your lesson from the first time, then, clearly we didn’t do enough. There wasn’t enough justice upheld to make you slow down and consider,” she said.
From the diagram in Lee County Sheriff’s Office’s report, Miller swerved from one side of the road to the other, and rear-ended the car in front of her. She swerved the other way in FHSMV’S diagram from the 2019 crash.
To be clear, Miller was not found guilty of any criminal charges in Tamplin’s case or the more recent crash, and the community is outraged that she wasn’t.
Jay Anderson, Executive Director of Stay Alive Just Drive also works as a driving instructor and says Miller actually took one of his courses after the death of Tamplin.
“She got the preverbal slap on the wrist, the $1,000 fine, six month to a year suspension of their driver’s license, and boom, we’re back behind the wheel again,” he said
He added he sees these repeat crashes far too often.
“Inevitably, the consequences that can occur due to those poor choices, I think we need to have harsher consequences,” he said.
Tamplin says the punishment Miller will likely face still won’t be enough.
“It’s very likely that she’ll end up having to pay for damages for somebody’s car she hit, but she’s not going to have to pay for any damages for my child’s life,” she said.
That weekend crash happened on Durrance Rd and Rambo Ln, less than a mile away from where Tamplin was killed just a couple years ago. Even though people in the community are still outraged by that fatal crash, according to the law, Miller already paid the price for that one.
Criminal Defense Attorney, Peter Dennis says even though the punishment may not fit the action, it’s the law.
“Unfortunately, tragic accidents can happen. And loss of life can occur. It’s not always a good situation, but it does happen, and it’s not always criminal,” he said. “It’s important to remember sometimes we have to separate the law with how we may feel about a certain situation.”
That’s why Tamplin says it’s time for the law to change.
“Until we start making people accountable for their actions when they take a life, they’re going to continue to do so. And, they’re going to continue to not care,” she said.
Fox 4 also attempted to include Miller in this story, but she could not be reached Friday afternoon.