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FHP identifies Pasco County woman killed in fiery car wreck


FHP identifies woman killed in Oct. 3 crash

The Florida Highway Patrol has released the name of a woman who was killed the night of Oct. 3 in a traffic accident on State Road 52 west of Bellamy Brothers Boulevard.

Gabriella L. Vega, 32, of Port Richey was driving a 1991 Lincoln Town Car west on SR 52 when it collided head-on with a 1989 Dodge pickup headed east. Vega died at the scene.

The front passenger of the Lincoln, Tiffany Simmons, 21, of Dade City was seriously injured, but her condition was upgraded to stable on Monday.

Sgt. Larry Kraus, FHP spokesman, said Vega's three children were also in the car: 7-year-old Soleman and younger siblings Isabella and Tiffany, whose ages were not available.

All three children were critically injured, but Kraus said they have been released from the hospital.

The driver of the pickup truck, David Drake, 21, of Zephyrhills was ejected from the truck and was in very critical condition earlier this week, Kraus said. He did not have an updated medical condition for Drake or his passenger, Christine Clinton, 19, of Dade City.

Kraus said the accident is still being investigated and no charges have been filed.


Trio jailed, accused of trying to sell cocaine

Three people are accused of trying to sell a kilo of cocaine, according to the Pasco County Sheriff's Office.

They were arrested Thursday night at a house on 8320 Redfield Drive in Port Richey. Ten marijuana plants and a gun were also found in the house, according to a report.

Kevin Doll, spokesman for the Sheriff's Office, said the cocaine had a street value of $25,000.

Those arrested were:

• LaSanchez M. Singletary, 33, of Dade City, charged with conspiracy to traffic cocaine. Bail was set at $50,000.

• Tyrone L. Smith, 29, of Dade City, charged with armed trafficking of cocaine. Bail: $50,000.

• Chevette A. Joe, 28, who lives at the Port Richey address where the arrests were made, charged with trafficking cocaine and cultivation of marijuana. Bail: $60,800.

All three remained at the Land O'Lakes jail Friday.


Caregiver charged in thefts from patient

A caregiver for Comfort Keepers stole checks for $1,610 from her disabled 63-year-old patient, according to the Pasco County Sheriff's Office.

Rose Gardner, 54, was arrested Thursday and is charged with grand theft and scheme to defraud.

Detectives found video surveillance of Gardner cashing the checks at a Zephyrhills Bank of America, a report says.

Gardner told authorities she had permission to cash the checks, but admitted to taking three of them. She is accused of taking 21 checks.

A call to Comfort Keepers was not returned Friday.

Gardner, who lives in Wesley Chapel, is being held at the Land O'Lakes jail in lieu of $7,500 bail.


FHP says drunk man hit fire rescue truck

Authorities say Edwin H. Decker was drunk when he rode his bicycle into a Pasco County Fire Rescue truck on Hicks Road on Wednesday night.

The 46-year-old injured himself and damaged the truck, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.

Decker was taken to Regional Medical Center Bayonet Point, where he was arrested on a charge of driving under the influence, then was treated and transported Thursday morning to the Land O'Lakes jail.

Decker lives at 13709 Hicks Drive in Hudson, a mile from the accident site. Decker remained in jail Friday in lieu of $151 bail. He is charged with DUI and refusing a breath test.


Sheriff, Fire Rescue to sponsor Safety Fair

The Pasco County Sheriff's Office and Pasco Fire Rescue are sponsoring a Safety Fair from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Oct. 17 at Atonement Lutheran Church, 29617 State Road 54.

Kevin Doll, spokesman for the Sheriff's Office, said there will be lessons on bicycle and fire safety.

Parents can get DNA, fingerprint and photo kits for their children to help authorities locate them.

McGruff the Crime Dog will be there and businesses will give out gift bags.

FHP identifies Pasco County woman killed in fiery car wreck 10/09/09 [Last modified: Friday, October 9, 2009 9:01pm]
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