Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Autopsy confirms Tampa woman died of carbon monoxide poisoning

TAMPA — Kashaunda Joyner woke up for work Thursday and felt nauseous. She tried to call 911, but kept passing out, records show.

She finally got through at 9:27 a.m., but when authorities arrived, Joyner's roommate, Rebecca Hawk, didn't appear to have a heartbeat.

On Friday, authorities confirmed Hawk, 23, died of carbon monoxide poisoning.

A Medical Examiner's report says she died after accidentally inhaling motor vehicle exhaust.

That's what police suspected after they discovered that Hawk's neighbor, Andrew Grywalski, 22, left a car running in a garage adjacent to Hawk's bedroom. It had been running for about 11 hours, police said.

Joyner, 20, also was taken to the hospital Thursday. On Friday, she was resting at her mother's home.

Police are waiting for a written report of Hawk's autopsy, which detectives want to review before conferring with the State Attorney's Office about whether charges against Andrew Grywalski are appropriate.

Police spokeswoman Laura McElroy said it's too early to say whether the incident was an accident or if charges are likely. State Attorney's Office spokesman Mark Cox said he couldn't comment on the case while it's still in detectives' hands.

Each year, more than 400 people in the United States die from carbon monoxide poisoning, according to the Centers for Disease Control. More than 20,000 visit the emergency room and more than 4,000 are hospitalized.

Just last month, three people in Palm Harbor were rushed to local hospitals with carbon-monoxide poisoning after a car was left running in a closed garage. A 60-year-old man, 50-year-old woman and her minor daughter all survived.

Several government agencies, including the Office of the Surgeon General and the U.S. Fire Administration, recommend that homeowners install carbon monoxide detectors in their homes.

Some models sell for as little as $12. In many states, however, they're not required.

In Florida, detectors are required within 10 feet of sleeping areas on post-July, 2008 construction on buildings with gas-burning appliances.

The Vista Grande at Tampa Palms apartments were built in 2002, and this week the Tampa Fire Department said the complex appeared to be up to code.

Jessica Vander Velde can be reached at (813) 226-3433 or [email protected]

Autopsy confirms Tampa woman died of carbon monoxide poisoning 09/02/11 [Last modified: Friday, September 2, 2011 3:56pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Astros rout Yankees to force Game 7 of AL Championship Series


    HOUSTON — Justin Verlander pitched seven shutout innings to outduel Luis Severino for the second time, and the Astros bats came alive in their return home as Houston routed the Yankees 7-1 Friday night and forced a decisive Game 7 in the American League Championship Series.

    The Astros’ Brian McCann, who has struggled during the ALCS, breaks a scoreless tie with an RBI double during the fifth inning off Yankees starter Luis Severino.
  2. Review: Faith Hill and Tim McGraw shower love, star power on Tampa's Amalie Arena


    Near the end of their potent new duet Break First, Tim McGraw stopped singing, and let Faith Hill's powerhouse voice take over.

    Faith Hill and Tim McGraw performed at Amalie Arena in Tampa on Oct. 20, 2017.
  3. Senate to take up AUMF debate as Trump defends reaction to Niger attack


    WASHINGTON — The Senate Foreign Relations Committee is taking up a long-awaited debate about authorizing military force against the Islamic State as President Trump comes under unprecedented public scrutiny for his treatment of dead soldiers' families, following an ambush on troops helping to fight Islamic …

  4. In fear and vigilance, a Tampa neighborhood holds its breath


    TAMPA — There was a time, not long ago, when Wayne Capaz would go for a stroll at night and Christina Rodriguez would shop whenever she wanted. Michael Fuller would go to his night job as a line cook, not too worried about his wife at home.

    More than 50 people gathered and walked in the Southeast Seminole Heights community Friday to pay respects to the victims of three shootings. The crowd took a moment of silence at the corner of 11th Street and East New Orleans where Monica Hoffa was found dead. [JONATHAN CAPRIEL  |  Times]
  5. Fennelly: What's not to like about Lightning's start?

    Lightning Strikes

    BRANDON — No one is engraving the Stanley Cup. No one has begun stuffing the league MVP ballot box for Nikita Kucherov.

    The Lightning, with a win tonight, would match the best start in franchise history, 7-1-1 in the 2003-04 Cup season.