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Figueroa sentenced to six years in prison for leaving the scene after fatally hitting Maggie Paxton on University Avenue

BY JENNIFER CABRERa

Joshua Figueroa, 32, was sentenced this week to six years in state prison after pleading nolo contendere to leaving the scene of an accident involving death. Figueroa was charged on July 1, 2021, with leaving the scene after hitting University of Florida student Maggie Paxton on University Avenue on December 9, 2020. The car was identified using License Plate Readers and was eventually located at an auto repair shop, where detectives noted that it was “wedged in amongst other vehicles in an attempt to hide the vehicle.” Paperwork found in the car and cell phone records led investigators to identify Figueroa as the driver, and a witness who is a friend of Figueroa’s told detectives that Figueroa called him that night and told him he had hit something with his car.

The charge carries a mandatory minimum sentence of 4 years and a maximum of 30 years; the plea deal gave Figueroa 6 years in state prison, followed by 15 years of probation.

  • He killed someone and fled like a coward. Then tried to hide the car!
    And gets only 6 years???

    • Wow black male gets 20 yrs for making extra cash you kill a person and run get 6

  • Unbelievable. Money buys lighter sentences. What a scumball. Is it the judge who decides the prison term?? Why would the judge give such a light sentence for such “behavior”?

    • Joshua Figueroa (or his parents) bought a dang fine lawyer in Robert Rush. Judge Pena did reject the original change of plea (which called for four years in prison and ten years felony probation) but I recall hearing Judge Pena say something about wanting to “bring closure” quickly.

  • Joshua Figueroa’s sentence also included a ten year license suspension and 120 hours of community service in a trauma center or hospital that regularly receives accident victims.

    Given Figueroa’s terrible driving record, his license should have been permanently suspended, but I like that community service provision in Florida law for reckless drivers. While I do not want to see anyone else die in a traffic accident (I lost my father to a vehicular homicide) I hope Joshua Figueroa has to see plenty of people similar to what he did to another human being, clean up a lot of blood, and haul a lot of remains to the hospital’s morgue.

  • The fact that he has been a generally decent person apart from this one episode was probably taken into account for his sentencing. Plea bargains are generally shorter sentences than one would expect to receive after going to trial and being found guilty. You can go to trial and roll the dice, and possibly come up with 15 years in prison instead of 6, or ‘possibly’ be found not guilty.

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