Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

$9-million negligence ruling against Kenneth Petrillo won't affect the Tampa police officer's status

TAMPA — A judge's $9.14 million ruling against an officer involved in a 2005 crash will have no bearing on his employment with Tampa police, an agency police spokeswoman said.

Kenneth Petrillo was a deputy with the Pasco County Sheriff's Office when he crashed into a Honda Accord on Jan. 3, 2005, after running a red light during a chase of a DUI suspect.

A judge ruled Friday that Petrillo was negligent and victim Jennifer Wohlgemuth is entitled to millions in damages after she suffered a brain injury that her attorney said leaves her unable to care for herself.

Petrillo joined Tampa police in September 2007 after 11 years with Pasco County, according to his personnel file. In that time, he has had strong reviews. Nine months after joining the department, he was lauded by a supervisor as someone who "conducts himself as a veteran officer would and takes great pride in his work."

Petrillo also is a co-founder of K9 Forensics Recovery Team, Inc., a voluntary canine search team specializing in detecting human remains.

A key disagreement in the lawsuit was whether Petrillo activated his siren and lights when he joined the chase. He said in a sworn statement that he did, but Wohlgemuth's attorney said a witness testified otherwise.

Petrillo was not wearing his seat belt, as agency policy required. Nor did he have his supervisor's permission to join the chase.

The judge's ruling should not affect his standing in Tampa, police spokeswoman Laura McElroy said.

Court judgment won't affect Tampa officer's status

$9-million negligence ruling against Kenneth Petrillo won't affect the Tampa police officer's status 03/17/09 [Last modified: Tuesday, March 17, 2009 11:20pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Lightning takes defenseman Cal Foote with top pick in draft

    Lightning Strikes

    CHICAGO — Former Avalanche defenseman Adam Foote said his son Cal lived in the locker room.

    Cal Foote, second from left, is welcomed to the Lightning by GM Steve Yzerman, far left.
  2. It's Rays' turn to pound Orioles pitching (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG - Ah, the fantastic four.

    The Rays smashed the reeling Orioles 15-5 on Friday, scoring a season-high in runs, to climb four games above .500 for the first time since July 1, 2015.

    Rays third baseman Evan Longoria scores on a triple by Logan Morrison during the first inning against the Orioles.
  3. Lightning picks defenseman Cal Foote

    Blogs

    Cal Foote is the son of former Avs defenseman Adam Foote.
  4. Kids today: They don't work summer jobs the way they used to

    Business

    WASHINGTON — It was at Oregon's Timberline Lodge, later known as a setting in the horror movie The Shining, where Patrick Doyle earned his first real paycheck.

    Teens Ben Testa, from left, Hannah Waring and Abby McDonough, and Wegmeyer Farms owner Tyler Wegmeyer walk the strawberry rows at the Hamilton, Va., farm in late May.
  5. Jeb Bush back in the hunt for the Marlins, now opposing Derek Jeter

    Blogs

    Associated Press:

    Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush has switched sides in pursuit of the Miami Marlins, and he’s trying to beat out former teammate Derek Jeter.