Street racing leads to Courtney Campbell crash - WFLA News Channel 8

Street racing leads to Courtney Campbell crash

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Image courtesy TPD Image courtesy TPD

A car lost control on the Courtney Campbell Causeway early Monday morning and struck a police cruiser, Tampa Police officers said.

According to the TPD report, two cars were coming over the bridge westbound hump at high speed of over 100 miles per hour.

One of the cars lost control, trying to avoid colliding with a third vehicle, police said. "He lost control, hit a guardrail, slid down the guardrail and struck the police cruiser," said Lt. Stephen Lee, Tampa Police department.

Sgt. Thomas Miller was monitoring the Causeway in his cruiser as a part of the initiative against bridge racing. He saw the car speeding towards him and tried to accelerate to lessen the impact, according to the report.

The driver of the car, John Rubio, 34, refused medical attention, paramedics took Sgt. Miller to a hospital as a precautionary measure, police said.

TPD detectives are investigating the accident. Authorities charged Rubio with unlawful racing on the highway and reckless driving.

The street races happen frequently on the week-ends, according to Robby Stanley, who fishes in the evenings and launches his small boat from the Courtney Campbell Causeway ramps.

"They have been parked in this area and blocked the boat ramp. When you come in you can't even pull your boat out. There have been so many cars in here I would say there would be  300 to 500 people sitting here," said Stanley.

Lt. Lee admitted the racing is an ongoing battle. "They were racing when I came on 24 years ago. They race on the weekend, on the Courtney Campbell Causeway. We'll scare them to the 22nd Street Causeway, in Hillsborough county. They kick them out of there and they go to St. Pete and the Gandy Bridge area," said Lt. Lee.


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