Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

2 cab drivers flee holdups; one is shot

ST. PETERSBURG — Two cabdrivers dispatched to pick up customers early Thursday arrived to a surprise: guns aimed at their heads. One was shot. Neither gave up cash to his assailant.

The first attack took place around 2:50 a.m., when driver William G. Kelly went to pick up a fare at 2535 Union St. S, police said. A juvenile in a dark blue T-shirt approached the passenger side of his Independent Cab, pointed a black handgun through the open window and demanded money.

Kelly, 53, hit the gas. The gunman squeezed the trigger.

Kelly, a recent addition to Independent's 4 p.m.-to-4 a.m. shift, was shot in the right collarbone and a bullet pierced his throat, said company president Joe Rosa.

Other night-shift cabbies, listening to the ordeal over radio traffic, rushed to his aid and called for ambulances, Rosa said. He was taken to Bayfront Medical Center, where his was condition was not immediately available.

Kelly was shot about three miles northeast of where Nigerian-born cabbie Cyril Obinka was gunned down in May.

Citing dangers of the overnight shift, Rosa advises his cabbies to use a "gut feeling" on whether to pick up suspicious fares. Still, he said, "they are trying to get home and get their beef on the table."

Thirty minutes later and nearly four miles away, cab driver Michael Solt, 56, of Tampa was called to 1826 18th Ave. N, where he told police a juvenile in a black long-sleeve shirt approached the driver's side window and stuck a gun to his head.

Solt told police he thwarted the attack by driving away and flagging a nearby unmarked police car.

Casey Cora can be reached at (813) 226-3386 or at

2 cab drivers flee holdups; one is shot 07/10/08 [Last modified: Saturday, July 12, 2008 11:30pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Storm routs Cleveland


    TAMPA — Alvin Ray Jackson intercepted two passes, returning one for a touchdown, and recovered two fumbles as the Storm routed Cleveland 57-27 Saturday night in its home regular-season finale at Amalie Arena.

  2. Miscue sends Rays to another stinging loss to Rangers (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — The Rays gave away DJ Kitty onesies Saturday night. Then they gave away the game.

    Rays centerfielder Mallex Smith misses a drive hit by Adrian Beltre with two outs in the sixth, allowing the tying runs to score. Beltre puts Texas ahead 4-3 when he scores after two wild pitches.
  3. Rowdies shut out Charleston


    ST. PETERSBURG — The Rowdies know a thing or two about stalemates, with five of their past 10 games ending in a draw.

    Rowdies in the first half during the game between Tampa Bay Rowdies and the Charleston Battery at Al Lang Field in St. Petersburg, Fla., on Saturday, Jul 22, 2017.
  4. 13-year-old Janessa's father holds memorial service at Rogers Middle School


    RIVERVIEW — About 100 people sat in the tile-floored multipurpose room Saturday at Rodgers Middle School where Janessa Shannon once sat as a student.

    A mourner embraces Nahshon Shannon after the memorial service for Nahshon’s daughter, Janessa, Saturday at Rodgers Middle School in Riverview.
  5. Trump: Aircraft carrier a symbol of America's might (w/video)


    NORFOLK, Va. — With praise and a blessing for the military, President Donald Trump helped hand over the USS Gerald R. Ford to the Navy on Saturday and said the state-of-the-art aircraft carrier will send a "100,000-ton message to the world" about America's military might when it is ultimately deployed.

    President Donald Trump commissions the USS Gerald R. Ford on Saturday in Norfolk, Va.