Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Driver dead after losing consciousness in St. Pete intersection

ST. PETERSBURG — A driver died Tuesday after a "medical episode" caused her to slam into the back of another car.

Police said Karen Staszak, 50, of Largo stopped her 2009 Dodge Charger in the left turn lane of the intersection of 66th Street N and 18th Avenue N about 11 a.m. Staszak apparently suffered a medical episode that police said was heart-related and which left her unconscious at the wheel.

After she lost consciousness Staszak's foot slipped off the brake and pressed onto the gas pedal, police said, and the Charger accelerated into the back of Sharon Abbott's 2008 Chevrolet Impala.

Abbott, 69, of St. Petersburg turned left when the light changed to green and pulled off the road. But when her car was clear, police said, Staszak's vehicle accelerated out of the turn lane and into a wide left turn. She kept going until she had run off the road, through a fence, and into a dried up retention pond.

Staszak was transported to St. Petersburg General Hospital and transferred to Largo Medical Center, where she died about 5:40 p.m.

Driver dead after losing consciousness in St. Pete intersection 05/14/14 [Last modified: Wednesday, May 14, 2014 11:01pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Offense gets some juggling

    The Heater

    TORONTO — The night after scoring six runs to emerge from what had been a historically fallow offensive stretch seemed like an odd time to make changes to the lineup, but that was exactly what the Rays did for Wednesday's late game against the Blue Jays.

    Associated Press
  2. Dunedin man accused of possessing child pornography


    DUNEDIN — A 57-year-old man was arrested Wednesday, accused of intentionally downloading child pornography, the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office said.

    Richard Beal Anger, 57, of Dunedin faces 11 counts of possession of child pornography. [Courtesy of the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office]
  3. Pence cuts short Latin America trip and pressures Chile to sever all ties to North Korea


    SANTIAGO, Chile — Vice President Mike Pence is cutting short his Latin America trip by one day to return to Washington for a strategy meeting Friday at Camp David with President Donald Trump and the national security team.

    Vice President Mike Pence urged Chilean President Michelle Bachelet to take a tougher stand against North Korea on Wednesday in Santiago, Chile.
  4. Big Ben backlash: Plan to silence beloved bell under review


    LONDON — British Parliament officials said Wednesday they will review plans to silence Big Ben during four years of repairs after senior politicians criticized the lengthy muting of the beloved bell.

  5. UF's move to deny white nationalist Richard Spencer a venue sets up a First Amendment court fight


    In denying a notorious white nationalist his request to speak on campus, the University of Florida has brought a thorny legal battle to Gainesville in the name of keeping its students safe.

    Legal experts say the University of Florida will have an uphill battle in court proving that fears of violence from an appearance by white nationalist Richard Spencer will override the First Amendment. "There's a fine line between inciting lawlessness and engendering a situation where lawlessness arises," said Peter Lake, higher education law professor at Stetson University College of Law. [Getting Images]