PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — A Florida man has been sentenced to prison for driving off after hitting and killing a woman in East Providence back in August 2017.
Paul Newman, 55, of Jacksonville, pleaded no contest to one count of leaving the scene of an accident, death resulting. He was sentenced to 10 years with three to serve at the ACI.
Newman, a former Rhode Island resident, accidentally struck 46-year-old Maria Raposo as she crossed Newport Avenue near the Pawtucket border then fled in his rental car, according to the office of Rhode Island Attorney General Peter Neronha. Police said she was not in a crosswalk at the time.
Following the crash, an eyewitness followed Newman and reported his license plate number to police. Investigators tracked it to a rental facility in Warwick, where they discovered it had been cleaned and parts had been removed, according to police.
Newman turned himself in about an hour and a half after the crash. Police said he told them he thought he had hit a dog.
Once Newman is released from the ACI, he’ll serve two years of home confinement and the remaining five years are suspended with probation.
“Leaving the scene of an accident under any circumstances is a serious crime, especially when, as was the case here, a person has been severely injured or killed,” Neronha said in a statement. “Not only is it an effort to escape responsibility, but it may also delay an emergency response that might limit the extent of injury. The prison sentence imposed here was entirely appropriate.”