PINELLAS PARK, Fla. (CW44 News At 10) – A St. Petersburg man is now dead after police say a drunk driver crashed into his vehicle early Tuesday morning.
One of the busiest roadways in Pinellas Park has been cleared of debris from that crash that happened just before 1am on Tuesday, December 29, 2020. Police say 27-year-old Kaylyn Coston of Tampa was driving recklessly and at a high rate of speed down Park Boulevard. At the same time, 21-year-old Keondrae Miller and his friend in the vehicle 36-year-old Javonte Williams were stopped at the stop sign on 64th Street before crossing Park Blvd. Police say Miller pulled out to take a right in front of Coston’s vehicle and was struck. Williams suffered severe injuries and Keondrae Miller died in the hospital.
Police say Coston was driving while intoxicated. “Safety for our roadways is a priority and one of the ways the community can help us with that is, obviously, if you drink, to not drive. It’s easier and safer to catch a rideshare or a cab or have a designated driver then it is to get behind the wheel and potentially take the life of somebody, like what happened unfortunately this morning,” said Sgt. John Shea, a spokesperson for the Pinellas Park Police Department.
Now, Pinellas Park Police are focusing on roadway safety ahead of the holiday weekend. “We see a large quantity of traffic traveling along US-19 and Park Boulevard, so our officers will be out and they will be working through DUI enforcement waves,” said Sgt. Shea. “They will be out there to ensure the roadways are safe and that we are removing any impaired drivers from the roadway to keep those that are being safe about it, safe – as they travel home.”
Considering more people are expected to stay home due to the pandemic this year, officials tell CW44 News At 10 that driving has become the preferred option for those choosing to travel for the holidays. “You see that the airports are not as busy as they previously have been so people are taking to the roadways because they feel safer in their own vehicle, so that, in turn is going to put more traffic, potentially, on the roadways,” said Sgt. Shea.
A few basic tips, the Sergeant says, will help their teams to keep the roadways safe for everyone on them. “There are so many options nowadays to avoid a DUI or potentially a life-altering decision of yourself and or somebody that could be an innocent driver on the roadway. Obviously, for folks that are going to be going out on New Year’s Eve, plan ahead. Have a designated driver, have a ride to pick you up. You can park your vehicle, obviously there are rideshares.”
The suspect, Coston was arrested and is being charged with DUI manslaughter, DUI with serious bodily injury, DWLSR involving death, DWLSR involving serious bodily injury, and Violation of Probation for DUI. The investigation is still active but police say no further information is expected to be released.
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