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Judge sets Feb. trial date for Palm Beach County deputy; victim's father breaks down

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Posted at 12:17 PM, Jan 07, 2019
and last updated 2019-01-07 17:36:41-05

PALM BEACH COUNTY, Fla. — A judge set a February trial date on Monday for a Palm Beach County deputy who investigators said ran a stop sign and crashed into a car, critically injuring a teen.

RELATED: Teen learning how to walk, talk again after crash involving PBSO deputy

Michael D'Avanzo was ticketed for speeding and running a stop sign, and will go to trial on Wednesday, Feb. 20.

Investigators said D'Avanzo was off-duty and driving 53 mph in a 25 mph zone in Delray Beach on July 15, 2018, when his pickup ran a stop sign and smashed into a vehicle carrying 18-year-old Farrah Fox.

The University of Central Florida student was comatose for a month.

The Palm Beach County State Attorney declined to charge D'Avanzo, saying the stop sign was blocked by a low-hanging tree, and drivers traveling at or above the speed limit would not have seen it.

After court on Monday, Fox's father broke down while talking about his daughter.

"Farrah called up crying on Saturday, realizing that she may never be normal," said Ira Fox. "She may never be the same girl she was before the accident, and she’s fighting every day to get better."

Fox said his daughter was in the hospital for two months before beginning extensive rehabilitation.

"Until my daughter is home for good and can continue with outpatient therapy, it's just incredible uncertainty," Fox told WPTV on Monday.

The Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office said D'Avanzo remains on active duty.