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St. Petersburg community reacts to car crash and death investigation involving 14-year-old driver

12:31 AM, Jul 9, 2012   |    comments
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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - People who live in one St. Petersburg neighborhood are reacting to two incidents that happened in their community Sunday morning: a car crash involving a 14-year-old driver and a man's death. It's unclear right now, though, whether or not the two are related.

"That's pretty alarming, and hopefully it's an isolated incident," said neighbor Zeffery Mims.

Shortly after 5 a.m., police said the teen driver and a 12-year-old passenger were turning onto Sunfish Drive SE from Manatee Drive. According to authorities, the teen was speeding, lost control, hit a utility poll, and ended up on the lawn of a house along the 3600 block.

Brenda Washington, who lives at that house, said police knocked at her door to tell her what happened. "It's beyond scary 'cause I want to know why," she said.

During the crash investigation, police said they found a man lying on the front lawn of a home along Sea Robin Drive, just a few houses down from the crash. He later died at Bayfront Medical Center. Police have not released how that man died. His identity is also unknown.

Bryseana Mills lives at that house and said she woke up to a woman yelling and other noises. "I heard a boom. I thought it was fireworks. But then I heard another boom like a car door shut. So, it's just crazy," he said.

Mills added she doesn't know who the man is that ended up on her property.

Although police are not confirming these two incidents are linked, Mims believes they are. He told 10 News he heard some people arguing outside the house next door and, after a while, saw the car on his other neighbor's lawn.

"I see a couple folks, like three people, jumping out the car that's parked in the middle of the lawn here. They run back over to this house, they're walking on the side of the house discussing what they're going to do," said Mims.

Police said the 14-year-old and 12-year-old involved in the crash took off from the scene before they arrived. According to authorities, the two have been identified but are not in police custody.

Meanwhile, police are asking for help in identifying the man who died. He's described as a heavy set black man, 25-35 years old, wearing a grey polo shirt and red shorts.  

The investigation continues. 

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