Woman killed in suspected DUI crash in Hillsborough County

Samuel Hernandez, 26, is charged with DUI Manslaughter in connection to a crash that killed a Dade City woman.
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Check for the latest breaking news and updates. [ Photo illustration by ASHLEY DYE and LUIS SANTANA | Times ]
Published April 16, 2022

A Dade City woman was killed early Saturday on Interstate 275 about five miles north of Bearss Avenue when the Jeep in which she was riding was struck by another vehicle driven by a suspected drunken driver, the Florida Highway Patrol said.

Samuel Hernandez, 26, of Spring Hill, was driving an Acura TLX north around 2:30 a.m. Saturday in the outside lane of I-275 when the collision occurred, troopers said. The Jeep, a Wrangler, driven by a 41-year-old Dade City man, was ahead of the Acura.

Hernandez overtook the Jeep and collided with the back of the vehicle, causing the Jeep to go into the center median, where it hit the cable barrier and overturned, troopers said.

The 43-year-old passenger in the Jeep was ejected from the vehicle. She died from her injuries, Troopers said. The driver of the Jeep had minor injuries.

After the crash, the Acura rotated to a stop along the outside shoulder of the road, troopers said.

Hernandez suffered minor injuries, and his 26-year-old male passenger was uninjured, troopers said.

Hernandez was later arrested by troopers on a charge of driving under the influence-manslaughter. He had a blood-alcohol content of 0.117 percent. Florida law presumes a driver is impaired with a blood-alcohol content of 0.08 percent or greater.

Hernandez was taken to a Hillsborough County jail, troopers said.

This is a developing story. Stay with for updates.