TAMPA, Fla. – One man is dead and another was hospitalized Thursday after a chase on a Florida interstate ended with a crash and both men jumping into Tampa Bay, authorities said.
According to the Florida Highway Patrol, a trooper attempted a traffic stop on a vehicle that exceeded 130 mph as it traveled northbound on Interstate 275, the Tampa Bay Times reported. The trooper stopped his pursuit, but the speeding vehicle crashed into other vehicles on the Howard Frankland Bridge, the FHP said.
The two men exited their vehicle and jumped off the bridge into Tampa Bay, WFTS reported.
Jason Penny, of Tampa Fire Rescue, told WFLA that dive teams from the Tampa Police Department and Tampa Fire Rescue were called in to find the men.
One of the men was found dead by divers, WTSP reported. The other man was pulled from the water by a Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission boat, the Times reported. Troopers said they believed the second man was the driver of the vehicle, the newspaper reported. He was taken to an area hospital with serious injuries, according to the FHP.
The crash caused a long delay on the bridge, which connects Tampa with St. Petersburg.
“It is dynamic when you have a scene like this with tons of witnesses, you have an idea of what you think happened, but information can change literally from one second to the next,” Penny told WFLA. “You know, it’s typical of Florida, we see these nutty things happen.”
Troopers said they discovered a “large amount of cash and narcotics” inside the vehicle, WTVT reported.
The names of the men have not been released.
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