Sunday, February 25, 2018
Public safety

Officials shut down Interstate 75 north in Pasco to investigate suspicious death

ZEPHYRHILLS — Two men were taken into custody late Saturday after authorities found a critically injured man in the front seat of a sedan parked along northbound Interstate 75, 1 mile north of State Road 54.

The unidentified victim was pronounced dead by emergency responders, Pasco County sheriff's deputies said.

An off-duty deputy was driving south on I-75 when he noticed what appeared to be a fight near a four-door Acura, Pasco County Sheriff Chris Nocco said. The deputy turned around and parked near the car, where a man approached him "in an aggressive manner," Nocco said.

Another man who had suffered "very violent" injuries sat in the front seat of the Acura, Pasco Sheriff's Office spokesman Doug Tobin said. In the back seat, he said, another "very calm" man smoked a cigarette.

Deputies brought the two men, who are not from the Tampa Bay area, into custody for questioning, Tobin said. By 10 p.m., no arrests had been made.

The incident remains under investigation.

"We're going to do this right," Nocco said. "The family of the victim deserves to know that the killer of their loved one will be going to prison."

Officials closed part of northbound I-75 a mile north of SR 54 about 7:20 p.m. to investigate the suspicious death, backing up traffic into the night.

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