It could take months to extradite Pinellas DUI manslaughter fugi - WFLA News Channel 8

It could take months to extradite Pinellas DUI manslaughter fugitive Garrett Bruce

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Garrett Bruce was arrested in Texas. Pinellas County Jail photo Garrett Bruce was arrested in Texas. Pinellas County Jail photo
Jennifer Bruce and the couple's two sons were found with Garrett Bruce in Texas. Pasco Co. Sheriff photo Jennifer Bruce and the couple's two sons were found with Garrett Bruce in Texas. Pasco Co. Sheriff photo

Pinellas prosecutor Greg Groger says it will likely take between two weeks and two months to return fugitive Garrett Bruce to Florida where he will face trial for DUI manslaughter. The timing depends on whether Bruce resists extradition from Texas.

Bruce skipped a hearing in Pinellas County last week, setting into motion a nationwide search for him and his missing family. He was supposed to stand trial Tuesday for DUI manslaughter and vehicular homicide in connection with the 2011 deadly crash in Tarpon Springs that killed Patrick Vosbein, who was a passenger in the back seat of a vehicle Bruce was driving.

Federal Marshals arrested Bruce Wednesday afternoon in Katy, Texas which is near Houston. Authorities say Bruce was getting his travel trailer repaired at the time of his arrest and had shaved his head to alter his appearance.

Groger said given the circumstances of Bruce's flight to avoid prosecution, it is not likely that Pinellas Circuit Judge R. Timothy Peters will grant Bruce another pretrial release once he returns to Florida. Bruce was out on $100,000 bond when he vanished last month along with his wife Jennifer and two sons ages five and seven.

Jennifer Bruce and the boys were with Bruce at the time of his capture. Groger said there's been no decision whether to charge Jennifer Bruce with aiding and abetting and that any decision will require further investigation.

Pasco County Sheriff Chris Nocco issued a nationwide missing persons alert for Jennifer and the children last week and expressed concern about their well being. Jennifer Bruce pulled her kids out of school two days after bail bondsman Ralph Sims discovered Bruce had removed his GPS ankle monitor and vanished.

It's not clear whether Bruce's family is in Texas or has returned to their home in New Port Richey.

According to the Pasco Sheriff's Office, Garrett and Jennifer Bruce told their children they were on a family vacation during Bruce's brief flight from justice.

Garrett faces as much as 15 years in prison if a jury convicts him of DUI manslaughter and an additional five years for his failure to appear in court.


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