GREEN COVE SPRINGS, Fla. – A judge on Monday revoked the bond for a 40-year-old man charged in a fiery crash in Clay County that severely injured a 23-year-old man in April.
According to prosecutors, last month, while out on bond, Clifford Ringer, of Middleburg, ran a red light. Prosecutors said it’s the same scenario that led to the crash involving Gavin Conroy, of Clay County, who suffered burns over 90% of his body.
After the court hearing Monday morning, Clifford Ringer was handcuffed and led to jail.
Outside, Gavin Conroy’s family left the Clay County Courthouse breathing a sigh of relief.
“I just feel a little bit of relief knowing he’s off the streets,” said Stacie Whitlatch, Conroy’s aunt.
According to the Florida Highway Patrol, Ringer was driving on a suspended license when he rear-ended Conroy on April 14 at Wells Road and Debarry Avenue, causing burns to 93% of his body.
Records show Ringer has had multiple citations over the course of several years. That includes July 2, less than three months after the crash involving Conroy. Prosecutors said Ringer was caught violating traffic law again.
Deputy Austin, with the Clay County Sheriff’s Office, testified Monday in court about that day.
Austin: “I observed a red sedan pass by me going northbound completely ignoring the red light.”
Prosecutor: “And the light, it was a red light?”
Austin: “It was a red light.”
During court, Ringer’s attorney said that his client was offering to surrender his driver’s license. But it wasn’t enough to sway the judge, and Conroy’s aunt is grateful.
Whitlatch said that both of her nephew’s legs and several fingers have been amputated and that he’s gone through more than two dozen surgeries, including one Sunday night.
Family and friends wore T-shirts and held signs in support on Monday.
“We are watching what he’s having to go through and watching what my sister is having to go through,” Whitlatch said. “We’re here to send a message: We need justice.”
Conroy’s family said he still has a long road to recovery ahead of him. The family plans to hold a benefit fundraiser later this month. The cookout for Conroy and his mother is scheduled for Saturday, Aug. 27, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Harley-Davidson dealership on Wells Road.