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The Villages
Saturday, December 9, 2023

Change of plea likely aimed at keeping 95-year-old hit-and-run suspect out of prison

Elinor Levitt
Elinor Levitt

A 95-year-old Villager accused of hitting a fellow resident driving a golf cart and then fleeing the scene appears ready to change her plea.

Elinor Levitt was allegedly at the wheel of a green 2007 Mercury Montego on the afternoon of Dec. 29 when she ran a stop sign and hit a golf cart driven by 81-year-old Nancy Lou Hooper.

A trial date had been set for Oct. 2 in Marion County Court. The Sumter Senior Living resident has pleaded not guilty to a charge of hit and run.

However, documents on file in court indicate that Levitt has decided to change her plea. A change of plea hearing is now set for Oct. 31.

The former resident of the Village of Calumet Grove, ran a stop sign and struck Hooper’s golf cart, according to an accident report from the Florida Highway Patrol. A Villager witnessed the crash and tried to get Levitt to stop, but the native New Yorker kept going, the report said. Hooper, a full-time resident of The Villages since 2007 and a member of the Aqua Rhythms Synchronized Swim Team, had been to the Chatham Postal Station to collect her mail. She was taken to Ocala Regional Medical Center’s ICU having suffered broken legs, broken ribs and blood clots. Friends say it’s been a long and difficult recovery for Hooper.

Nancy Lou Hooper was severly injured when her golf car was struck by a hit and run driver
Nancy Lou Hooper was severely injured when her golf car was struck by a hit- and-run driver.

A gate camera was instrumental in Levitt’s arrest.

Levitt, while still living on Creekside Circle in the Village of Calumet Grove, had been ticketed in 2020 on a charge of careless driving following an accident near the entrance to Del Webb Spruce Creek on U.S. Hwy. 441 in Summerfield. Levitt had been at the wheel of the same green 2007 Mercury Montego that she was driving when she hit Hooper’s golf cart.

By entering into a change of plea, Levitt’s attorney has presumably attempted to strike a deal to keep his client out of prison. This past December, 91-year-old Villager Marilyn Hamilton was sentenced to five years in prison after a 2020 hit-and-run crash that seriously injured two bicyclists who are residents of the Village of Dunedin.

Do you think a prison sentence for an elderly driver convicted of hit and run is unfair? Share your thoughts at letters@villages-news.com

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