A Redington Beach man is facing vehicular homicide charges after Pinellas County authorities say he caused a fatal crash while racing another vehicle two years ago.
Florida Troopers say the 55-year-old man was driving west on 102nd Avenue at around dusk on November 19, 2018 in a new Ford Raptor pick-up truck when he became engaged in a race with the driver of another truck.
The two trucks approached the intersection of 97th Street North, where a 74-year-old woman was driving her 2002 Lexus ES300, with her 20-year-old granddaughter as a passenger. Troopers say the victim attempted to turn left on a green light, placing her in the path of the defendant’s vehicle.
The defendant’s truck allegedly struck the victim’s car in the passenger door, throwing the vehicle into the intersection. The defendant’s truck then rolled several times before coming to a stop. First responders arrived at the scene to find the driver of the Lexus had already expired. They transported the passenger to hospital with several serious injuries. She was held in intensive care for three weeks due to her injuries.
Troopers began to investigate the situation, locating witnesses who placed the defendant alongside the other truck in a racing posture. They say the two trucks began the race as soon as the light turned green a few intersections away. Additionally, troopers obtained a search warrant for the truck’s data recorder, which showed it was traveling over twice the speed limit at the time of impact.
The Brazilian native was arrested on August 20 and booked into the Pinellas County Jail on charges of vehicular homicide, reckless driving with serious injury, and racing on a highway. He was released after posting a $41,000 bond.