Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Drunken driver kills pedestrian, police say

James Dean Jr., 53, of Palma Del Mar, is accused of killing a 24-year-old pedestrian.

James Dean Jr., 53, of Palma Del Mar, is accused of killing a 24-year-old pedestrian.

A 53-year-old drunken driver was arrested Wednesday after striking and killing a pedestrian walking along the shoulder of the Pinellas Bayway and then crashing his pickup, police said.

James Dean Jr., who lives in Palma Del Mar, didn't stop or call for help after hitting 24-year-old Timothy Wood, police said. Dean faces charges of DUI manslaughter, DUI property damage and leaving the scene of a crash involving serious injury.

The accident happened about 12:25 a.m. Wednesday, police said. Dean was driving his 2007 Ford pickup north on Pinellas Bayway S. Wood was walking on the east shoulder, outside the driving lanes. Dean drove off the road in the 7400 block and hit Wood.

Wood hit his head on the windshield and right front passenger window of the truck. His body then tumbled onto the shoulder of the road, police said.

Dean kept driving north, police said. His truck was missing its right front headlight and passenger side mirror. His right front passenger window was also broken. Shards of glass lay inside the truck.

Dean drove to the entrance of Palma Del Mar, but his truck struck the east side of the road and plowed through several bushes. He struck a median, turned around, and then came to rest in the median.

Police arrested Dean after he failed several field sobriety tests.

An arrest affidavit says Dean had "a blank, dazed, flushed, uncomprehending facial expression." He slurred his words, mumbled and had a strong odor of alcohol, the affidavit says.

Dean was released from jail on Tuesday evening, about six hours before the fatal accident. He had been arrested Monday on charges of simple battery, disorderly intoxication and having an open container.

Wood, a Connecticut resident, was visiting friends on vacation, according to his aunt, Jane Wood, 58.

Times researcher Shirl Kennedy contributed to this report. Abhi Raghunathan can be reached at araghunathan@sptimes.com or (727) 893-8472.

Drunken driver kills pedestrian, police say 04/02/08 [Last modified: Tuesday, April 8, 2008 8:53am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. On the Camino de Santiago, Day 21: Tears of love and parting mark the beginning of the final leg of a pilgrim's journey.

    Travel

    Day 21: León to Hospital de Orbigo: 32.6 km, 8.75 hours. Total for Days 1-21 = 498 km (309 miles)

  2. Pinellas detectives investigating shooting that led to car crash

    Public Safety

    LARGO — Pinellas Sheriff's detectives are investigating a shooting that investigators said led to a man crashing his car after he was shot in the abdomen early Tuesday.

  3. Trump tweets, McCain return set stage for health bill vote (w/video)

    National

    WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump urged Republicans to "step up to the plate" for Tuesday's crucial Senate vote on their bill eviscerating much of the Obama health care law. The stage was set for high drama, with Sen. John McCain returning to the Capitol to cast his first vote since being diagnosed with brain …

    President Donald Trump, accompanied by Vice President Mike Pence, Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price, and others, speaks about healthcare, Monday, July 24, 2017, in the Blue Room of the White House in Washington. [Associated Press]
  4. Teenage driver livestreams crash that killed sister in California (w/video)

    Accidents

    FRESNO, Calif. — A teenage driver lost control of her car while she was livestreaming on Instagram and recorded part of the crash that authorities say killed her younger sister in California.

    This July 22, 2017 photo provided by the Merced County Sheriff, shows Obdulia Sanchez in Merced, Calif. Sanchez has been arrested in California on suspicion of causing a deadly crash that she recorded live on Instagram. She was booked into the Merced County Jail on suspicion of DUI and vehicular manslaughter after Friday's crash that killed her 14-year-old sister and badly injured another 14-year-old girl. [Merced County Sheriff via AP]
  5. Fiancee: Clearwater driver in truck trafficking case helped people

    Nation

    LOUISVILLE, Ky. — When a long-haul truck driver from Clearwater called his fiancee Sunday from a jail more than 1,000 miles from home, he had only a few minutes to describe the gruesome events that led to him being charged with a crime in which he could face the death penalty.

    James Mathew Bradley Jr., 60, of Clearwater, center, is escorted out of the federal courthouse following a hearing, Monday, July 24, 2017, in San Antonio. Bradley was arrested in connection with the deaths of multiple people packed into a broiling tractor-trailer. [Associated Press]