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Pinellas Park police seek driver racing motorcycle just before fatal crash

PINELLAS PARK — Investigators are still searching for the driver of a red sports car seen racing a motorcycle moments before the rider was fatally injured Nov. 22, Pinellas Park police said.

Zachary S. Thomas, 20, was racing the red car on a 2006 Honda motorcycle, police said, on eastbound Park Boulevard. Starting from 66th Street, the two vehicles were doing 80 to 100 mph, witnesses estimated. Thomas was even seen riding on the sidewalk at one point.

The race ended about 6 p.m. when Thomas slammed into the right side of a 2004 Chevy Impala turning left from westbound Park and cutting across eastbound Park onto 62nd Way N, police said.

Thomas was thrown from the motorcycle and landed more than 150 feet from the wreck. The red sports car, which was trailing Thomas, then fled, police said. Witnesses said the fleeing vehicle might have been a red Honda being driven by a white male with a white female in the passenger seat.

Thomas of St. Petersburg died of his injuries en route to Northside Hospital, police said. He was wearing a helmet and had a motorcycle endorsement on his license, police said. That means he passed a course allowing him to legally ride a motorcycle. His driving record has multiple infractions, state records show, and his last citation in January was for speeding. The Impala driver, Joshua A. Renshaw, 21, of St. Petersburg, was not injured, police said. State records show he also has multiple citations and had five traffic violations in 2010.

Investigators must determine if the Impala violated the motorcyclist's right of way, and how that right of way was affected by the motorcycle's speed, said Pinellas Park Sgt. Tracey Schofield. The driver of the red car could also face charges.

Pinellas Park police ask anyone with information to call Sgt. Tracey Schofield at (727) 541-0887.

Pinellas Park police seek driver racing motorcycle just before fatal crash 11/29/10 [Last modified: Tuesday, November 30, 2010 12:02am]
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