08/25/2007

Fla. deputy suspended for running red light during pursuit

By Stephen Thompson
The Tampa Tribune

PINELLAS, Fla. A Pinellas sheriff's deputy begins a four-day suspension today after sheriff's administrators determined he ran a red light during a chase and crashed into another vehicle, injuring a woman.

Deputy John Bradshaw ran the light at 38th Avenue North and 49th Street in St. Petersburg at 1:30 a.m. Sept. 22, according to sheriff's internal affairs documents released Wednesday. Bradshaw's cruiser struck a Toyota 4Runner driven by Grace Mariano Umali. Riding as a passenger was Umali's son, the sheriff's office said at the time.

Umali's injuries were described as not life-threatening. Her 3-year-old son, who was in the car, was not seriously hurt, the sheriff's office said at the time. Bradshaw broke his left leg.

Earlier in the evening, Bradshaw spotted a white Buick Regal traveling erratically. He started chasing the car after the driver failed to pull over for a traffic stop, sheriff's officials have said.

The pursuit began near Ulmerton Road and 49th Street North and proceeded south on 49th. Deputies placed stop sticks in the road at 46th Avenue North to blow out the tires, sheriff's officials said.

Farther south, at 38th Avenue North, Bradshaw's squad car collided with Umali's 4Runner. The squad car struck a utility pole and the 4Runner flipped, coming to rest upside down, sheriff's officials said.

Bradshaw was driving at least 57 mph, the internal affairs documents say.

Farther south, the Buick Regal stopped because its tires had blown, sheriff's officials said. A woman with a 2-year-old stayed in the car, but the five male occupants bolted, sheriff's officials have said. Three of the men were arrested that night; two others eluded authorities.

Bradshaw was disciplined for policy violations including one that requires deputies to obey laws.

Reporter Stephen Thompson can be reached at (727) 451-2336 or spthompson@tampatrib.com

Copyright 2007 Tampa Tribune

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