Several were injured in a police pursuit that ended in a serious collision on Monday evening in St. Petersburg. According to an article in The Tampa Bay Times, the Gulfport police officers were chasing a stolen car into St. Petersburg, where the stolen car collided with a bus that then crashed into an apartment building. As our experienced Palm Beach accident attorney knows, the probability of the occurrence of automobile accidents is severely increased during dangerous police pursuits.
Miraculously, there were no deaths resulting from this accident. However, at least two people from the stolen vehicle suffered injuries, as well as several bus passengers. According to Gulfport police Chief Robert Vincent, the incident started at 5:50 p.m. when Gulfport police Officer Jesse Kellington saw a 2012 silver Toyota Venza on the road during his routine patrol. Officer Kellington’s alerts were triggered after he checked the license plate of the vehicle and discovered that the vehicle was listed as stolen. The St. Petersburg police department revealed that the car was an Avis rental and had been stolen on Sunday after a woman had left her keys in the ignition.
Upon discovery of the stolen status of the vehicle, Officer Kellington began pursuing the car at S. Newton Avenue and 51st Street in Gulfport. Kellington reported that there were three men in the car. He was not aware of the toddler in the back seat.
The driver of the stolen vehicle led Kellington into St. Petersburg where the pursuit ended abruptly with a severe impact. As the vehicle entered St. Petersburg, it ran a stop sign and T-boned a PSTA bus at the intersection. The impact was so powerful that the bus lost control and crashed into a two-story apartment building. Fortunately, there were no bystanders present at the portion of the building that the bus had crashed into. Lieutenant Joel Granata of St. Petersburg Fire and Rescue was at the scene of the accident and reported that there was no major damage to the apartment building.
Reports have disclosed the identity of the driver of the stolen vehicle as Derrick Mims. Both Mims and a passenger of the vehicle were taken to a hospital to treat serious injuries suffered from the accident. The other passenger fled the scene and is yet to be found. The toddler in the back seat was taken to the All Children’s Hospital and was reported to be in stable condition. Fortunately, no one on the bus suffered any serious injuries.
Chief Vincent asserts that Mims was the cause of the accident given that the incident was a result of his decision to run from the police.
As depicted by this particular case, unexpected accidents can happen at any time due to someone else’s reckless actions, injuring innocent bystanders. Our experienced Boynton Beach accident lawyer helps injured individuals in all types of accidents and has advised such individuals of their legal rights in order to receive compensation in their recovery. Please contact The Law Office of Eric H. Luckman for a free consultation if you have suffered injuries in any kind of accident.