Pasco County authorities still are trying to determine how and why 85-year-old Fritz Geszti drove his car into a 130-foot sinkhole and who owns a second car found in the murky water next to Geszti's Oldsmobile. The body found in the 1986 Olds Cutlass that was recovered Friday evening was identified positively Sunday as Geszti, who had been missing since March.
The Pasco County Sheriff's Office has not determined when Geszti's car plunged into the sinkhole or its exact route. Monday, authorities would only say that the car went into the water along the southeast bank.
A heavy guardrail that separates the sinkhole from U.S. 19 had not been damaged, leading officials to speculate that Geszti must have driven behind the barricade. They say they have determined Geszti was not murdered but will not theorize on whether his death was an accident or suicide.
The license plate from the second car, a blue 1986 Dodge convertible that also was found upside down at the bottom of the sinkhole, was removed during the recovery of Geszti's car.
The car could have been in the water for as long as four years, said Sheriff's Office spokesman Jon Powers.
It definitely has been there since late last year, according to Legare Hole of Clearwater, who found Geszti's car in the early hours last Thursday while practicing night diving with his brother. Hole said he first saw the blue Dodge during a dive into the sinkhole last December.
The Dodge's tag expired in 1987 and was registered to a company in Miami that was taken over by a car rental company in Miami. When the rental company was contacted Friday by the Sheriff's Office, agents said they could find no record of the car but are continuing to check, Powers said.
The Sheriff's Office has no current record of a stolen-car report on the Dodge, but there could have been a record at one time that has since been purged, Powers said.
If a record of a stolen-car report on the Dodge is found, Powers said it, too, will be raised from the bottom of the hole.