Missouri City, Texas – Texas lawmakers have passed the Lisa Torry Smith Act more than three years after the mother of two was hit by a vehicle and later died.
“If we can help to prevent this from happening to another mother who simply wants to walk her child to school then this honors my sister’s life,” Gina Torry said.
Smith was hit in a crosswalk in her Missouri City neighborhood while walking her 6-year old son Logan to school.
The 6-year old kindergartner suffered a broken femur and shattered pelvis but survived the October 2017 incident.
“We vowed that we were not going to let her death be in vain,” said Lisa’s mother, Elaine Brooks.
The driver responsible for the crash was ticked but not criminally charged or indicted by a grand jury because the law didn’t allow it at the time.
“If the law would have been clearer and provided more instruction, the outcome would of likely been different,” said Fort Bend District Attorney Brian Middleton.
Middleton said he was approached by Lisa’s family for help and with the help of his team drafted the Lisa Torry Smith Act.
“If you cause bodily Injury in a cross walkthrough criminal negligence then you can be found guilty of a class A misdemeanor. If it causes death then there’s a higher punishment, a felony punishment,” Middleton said.
State Sen. Joan Huffman, who represents District 17, released the following statement:
“As legislators, we strive to make our communities safer. When I learned of the tragic incident that resulted in the loss of Lisa Torry Smith’s life, and the lack of punishment that followed, I knew we had to act. SB 1055 passed the House today, which means the bill is in the final stretch of being approved by the Governor and signed into law.
“Even though the work is not quite finished, I am optimistic that her legacy shall live on through this legislation, and that similar tragedies can be prevented in our communities. I am so grateful to have the support of both my Senate and House colleagues through this process, and it has been an honor to work with those of you that knew and loved Lisa to preserve her memory.”