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Suspect in crash that killed Hernando deputy faces additional charge

Anthony has pleaded not guilty to charges in the death of Hernando Deputy John Mecklenburg.

WILL VRAGOVIC | Times

Anthony has pleaded not guilty to charges in the death of Hernando Deputy John Mecklenburg.

BROOKSVILLE — Florida Highway Patrol investigators on Tuesday served a third-degree murder warrant for Michael J. Anthony, 35, of Silver Springs.

The warrant was served at the Sumter County Jail, where Anthony is being held on other charges stemming from the July 3 pursuit which led to a crash that killed Hernando Sheriff's Deputy John Mecklenburg.

The warrant stipulates a $250,000 bond.

Early on the morning of July 3, Brooksville police and Hernando deputies chased Anthony as he drove the wrong way down U.S. 41. Mecklenburg was one of the Hernando deputies involved in crashes while chasing Anthony, who later was arrested in Pinellas County.

Anthony already has been charged in Pasco County with felony murder.

He has pleaded not guilty in Hernando County to separate charges of attempted felony murder and attempted second-degree murder.

During the chase, authorities say, Anthony rammed Hernando Sgt. Brandon Ross, forcing him to crash into a pickup truck and a power pole in Masaryktown, causing minor injuries. That act, prosecutors determined, warranted the attempted murder charges.

Mecklenburg, 35, lost control of his cruiser and struck a tree along U.S. 41 in Pasco. He died later at St. Joseph's Hospital in Tampa.

Suspect in crash that killed Hernando deputy faces additional charge 08/09/11 [Last modified: Tuesday, August 9, 2011 8:55pm]

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