Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Bicyclist dies after being dragged underneath car in St. Petersburg

ST. PETERSBURG — Franklin D. Cameron was riding his bike on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Street S when he lost control of the bike, fell in front of an oncoming car and was dragged underneath it in the early hours of New Year's Day, according to St. Petersburg police.

The 58-year-old man was pronounced dead at a hospital.

Cameron was trying to exit the driveway in front of 5241 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. St. S about 12:47 a.m. Thursday when the accident happened, police said.

He lost control of his bike, fell onto the southbound curb of King Street and hit a southbound 2001 Chevy Monte Carlo, police said. Cameron became lodged underneath the car as the driver, Dontavous H. Thomas, 21, tried to stop.

Neither Thomas nor his passenger was injured. Cameron was taken to Bayfront Medical Center, where he was declared dead at 1:35 a.m.

Leon Dexter, 68, rented an apartment to Cameron. The landlord called the tenant his friend.

"We used to drink a beer together on Sundays," Dexter said. "He was just such a nice guy, so honest."

Dexter said Cameron recently had to move out temporarily because his girlfriend filed for a domestic violence injunction, and a judge ordered Cameron to stay 500 feet away from his own apartment. Online court records confirm that Angela Moore filed for an injunction against Cameron, though the judge's order could not be confirmed because the court clerk's office was closed Friday.

"I feel so hurt about what happened," Dexter said, "that he got hurt while he was on the street."

The investigation into the accident is continuing, as police determine whether alcohol was a factor in the crash and whether charges will be filed.

Thomas, the driver, turned 21 on Thursday.

Jamal Thalji can be reached at or (727) 893-8472.

Bicyclist dies after being dragged underneath car in St. Petersburg 01/02/09 [Last modified: Sunday, January 4, 2009 10:50pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Eckerd grad presses for answers after closure of Program for Experienced Learners


    ST. PETERSBURG — It’s not unusual for colleges to end programs or discontinue majors that suffer from low enrollment.

    Eckerd College
  2. Controversial pick for next principal of St. Petersburg High put on hold


    Robert Gagnon was all set to be the new principal at St. Petersburg High, a plum position in the Pinellas County school district. His name was on a list of top administrative candidates to be approved at a special School Board meeting Tuesday.

    Robert Gagnon, who currently serves as an assistant principal at Northeast High in St. Petersburg, was tapped to lead St. Petersburg High next year pending School Board approval. The recommendation for his appointment was pulled from the School Board agenda by school district superintendent Mike Grego on Monday in light of "new information shared with me" regarding Gagnon's administrative experience in Lake County, according to an email sent to Pinellas County School Board members.
  3. Even presidents get sinkholes: One has formed at Trump's Mar-a-Lago

    Bizarre News

    Even presidential mansions are susceptible to sinkholes — especially if they're in Florida.

    A sinkhole has formed in front of President Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate in south Florida.
  4. Colt Prattes and Abigail Breslin do the iconic lift scene in the remake of Dirty Dancing on ABC.
  5. Goodbye Tampa Bay Express, hello Tampa Bay Next; but toll lanes aren't going anywhere


    TAMPA — Tampa Bay Express is dead.

    But it's replacement — Tampa Bay Next — will likely include many of the same projects, including express toll lanes on the rebuilt Howard Frankland Bridge.

    The Florida Department of Transportation on Monday announced that it was renaming its Tampa Bay Express plan, also known as TBX. The plan will now be known as Tampa Bay Next, or TBN. DOT officials say there are still re-evaluating the most controversial aspect of the old TBX plan: spend $6 billion to add 90 miles of toll roads to bay area highways - Interstates 4,75 and 275 - that are currently free of tolls. But TBN will keep the plan to add express toll lanes to the rebuilt Howard Frankland Bridge. [Florida Department of Transportation]