Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Good Samaritan saves Lutz man from burning car in Land O'Lakes


Good samaritan saves man from burning car

An anonymous hero pulled a 35-year-old man from the burning wreckage of a car crash Tuesday night — then slipped away from the scene before anyone could find out who he was. The driver, Michael J. Simmerman of Lutz, suffered only minor injuries. The Florida Highway Patrol says Simmerman was speeding west on Leonard Road, north of Cot Road, about 9:30 p.m. when he ran off the road trying to negotiate a curve. The front passenger side of Simmerman's 2004 Toyota Corolla struck an electrical box, troopers said, but Simmerman kept driving. He then struck a tree and spun out before the Corolla flipped and caught fire, troopers said. Simmerman was charged with improper change of course and driving with an invalid license. Officials investigating the crash said they do not think alcohol was involved in the wreck. Simmerman was wearing his seat belt.


Medical worker charged in abuse

An employee at the Royal Oak Nursing Center was charged this week with elderly abuse. Police say she slapped a 90-year-old resident several times. Stacie Starcher, 36, is a certified nursing assistant who worked at the facility at 37300 Royal Oaks Lane. She was getting ready to give the woman a bath about 9:30 a.m. July 22 when Starcher got upset and slapped the woman across the face, according to the Dade City Police Department. The woman was not injured. Authorities say they do not know how hard the woman was struck or what prompted the slap. Another employee saw the incident and reported it to a supervisor. Starcher was arrested Tuesday at her home on Poinsettia Avenue and taken to Land O'Lakes Jail, where she was held Wednesday in lieu of $5,000 bail. A representative from the Royal Oak Nursing Center declined to comment, saying only, "you need to talk to the police about that."


2 children badly hurt in collision

Two children were taken to the hospital with serious injuries after a traffic crash Tuesday afternoon. Jamillicia El-hoursi, 12, and Jamira Young, 5, both of Tampa, were inside a minivan headed east on State Road 54 near Curley Road. The Florida Highway Patrol says the minivan turned left, into the path of an oncoming semitrailer truck, which could not avoid hitting the van. The impact sent the minivan spinning around SR 54. El-hoursi and Young were airlifted to St. Joseph's Hospital. Minivan driver Jasmine Dixon, 16, of Wesley Chapel, suffered minor injuries, as did passengers Jamira Dixon, 31; Rachel Dixon, 10; and Michael Dixon, 7. All wore seat belts. Semitrailer truck driver Timothy Brooks, 40, of Brooksville was not injured. FHP was investigating to determine whether charges will be filed.

Pasco deaths

Detailed obituaries appear in the Tampa Bay section.

Good Samaritan saves Lutz man from burning car in Land O'Lakes 07/27/11 [Last modified: Wednesday, July 27, 2011 9:25pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Rays beat Orioles, but tough stretch looms that could change their plans (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Even with their losing streak extending to five the night before, Rays officials were continuing Tuesday on their same track in trade talks leading up to Monday's deadline seeking a proven reliever and a right-handed bat.

    Looking to buy.

    The Rays’ Tim Beckham celebrates with Mallex Smith after hitting a three-run homer in the second inning for a 5-0 lead.
  2. Diaz, Taddeo win easily in special Miami Senate primaries


    Two Miami state Senate candidates who raised and spent the most in their respective primaries — Republican Rep. Jose Felix Diaz and Democratic businesswoman Annette Taddeo — notched easy victories in a special election Tuesday night.

    Republican candidate Jose Felix Diaz is surrounded by supporters after he won the primary for Florida’s Senate District 40 race. Democrat Annette Taddeo, right, celebrates her victory with supporter Venus Lovely at BJ’s Restaurant in The Falls.
  3. In live debate, Kriseman and Baker ask St. Pete: Is the city better off?



    Mayoral candidates Rick Kriseman and Rick Baker made their best pitch to voters in front of a live television audience on Tuesday night. The candidates essentially asked this: Is the city better off now than it was four years ago?

    Incumbent Mayor Rick Kriseman and former Mayor Rick Baker debate in front of a live television audience during the City of St. Petersburg Mayoral Debate at the Palladium Theater in St. Petersburg on Tuesday evening. The event was sponsored by the Tampa Bay Times and Bay News 9. [DIRK SHADD   |   Times]
  4. Romano: It all comes down to sewage in this mayoral race

    Local Government

    Well, poop.

    Nothing else really matters, does it?

    Schools, economic development, public safety? Pfft. The Rays stadium, affordable housing, the pier? Ack. When it comes to the St. Petersburg mayoral election, sewage is the yin, the yang and the yuck.

    At Tuesday’s debate, incumbent Mayor Rick Kriseman said responsibility lies on him regarding the sewage crisis.
  5. Shooting sends man to hospital in St. Pete


    ST. PETERSBURG — Police were investigating a shooting that occurred around 4:40 p.m. on Tuesday and sent a man to the hospital.