Crime & Courts
Driver tries to hit pedestrians, flees, dies in Tampa crash
TAMPA - A Hernando County woman eluding police crashed her car into a pole after she tried to run over two pedestrians in an apparent bar dispute, police said. Officers initially responded to Interstate Lounge, at Busch Boulevard and North Nebraska Avenue, after getting a call about a fight involving two women about 2:30 a.m. When officers arrived, the women were gone and officers learned one of them, 25-year-old Kathleen Trombley, left with 38-year-old Patrick Simmons in a white 2002 Pontiac. An officer and witnesses saw Trombley driving north on Nebraska as she accelerated, swerved onto the sidewalk and tried to run over two men on foot.Simmons and the pedestrians were yelling at one another as one of the walkers jumped out of the way and the other was knocked to the ground, police said. The Pontiac made a U-turn on Nebraska and fled south, police said. The officer also made a U-turn and was attempting to catch up with the vehicle. Trombley ran a red light at Busch Boulevard, turned off her headlights and began to drive at a high rate of speed, police said. She lost control of the car just south of Hillsborough Avenue and crashed into a pole at East Frierson Avenue, police said. Trombley, of 13255 Sun Road, Brooksville, was ejected from the car and died at the scene. Police said she previously lived in Steuben County, N.Y. The officer was still north of Hillsborough when the crashed occurred. He arrived at the scene and attempted to help Trombley and Simmons until Tampa Fire Rescue arrived, police said. Simmons, of 10525 Martys Circle, Tampa, was taken to Tampa General Hospital with a broken leg in stable condition. The pedestrians were not injured, police said. "At this point it’s not clear what the dispute was about and why she was targeting these two men on the sidewalk," police spokeswoman Laura McElroy said. "There were words exchanged, so apparently it was still connected to that dispute inside the bar. But none of that is clear at this point." Nebraska Avenue was closed near Hillsborough Avenue much of the morning but was reopened about 7:30 a.m. Stay with TBO.com for updates.
News Channel 8 reporter Chip Osowski contributed to this report.