Thursday, June 21, 2018
Public safety

Argument ends with man struck by SUV in bar parking lot

A Dunedin man was hit and flipped into the air by an SUV after an argument in the parking lot of Tumbleweeds bar, authorities said.

Thomas Paul Stacey Jr., 31, was taken to St. Joseph's Hospital in Tampa with serious head injuries after the altercation at 2 a.m. Tuesday, according to the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office.

The driver of the SUV, Wehner Lawrence Alfons, 47, of Largo was arrested and booked into the county jail on one count of aggravated battery with a deadly weapon and one count of driving with a suspended license.

Deputy Jim Cooper was on patrol early Tuesday when he saw two men arguing in the parking lot at 424 Patricia Ave.

As Cooper drove closer to investigate, he saw one of the men and two passengers climb into a 2002 Suzuki SUV. The vehicle backed up and then drove straight at Stacey, hitting him and causing him to fly up and over the front of the SUV, sheriff's officials said.

Deputies stopped the SUV a few blocks away. Alfons told a deputy he didn't know why he didn't stop and said he didn't know what was happening until it was too late, officials said.

Stacey was initially listed in critical condition in St. Joseph's intensive care unit, but had improved to fair by Wednesday.

Alfons was being held Wednesday in lieu of $30,000 bail.

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