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Sunday, January 24, 2021

Corrections Officer killed in crash with DUI driver in Pasco County

Troopers from the Florida Highway Patrol arrested 36 year-old Jonathan Valdes following a fatal crash in Pasco County.

The crash occurred at approximately 6:27 p.m. on Thursday, December 12, 2019 on US-301 and Rapid River Boulevard.

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A pest control truck operated by MEGASCAPES LANDSCAPE AND MAINTENANCE of Dade City, traveled off the roadway entering the east shoulder of northbound US-301. The driver of the truck, 36 year-old Jonathan Valdes, over-corrected back onto the roadway and across the southbound lanes of US-301.

Lauren Lee, age 30 of Clearwater, was traveling southbound on US-301 in a 2010 Honda 5 door vehicle. The truck entered into the path of the Honda. Lee died at the scene of the crash.

Troopers report that Valdes was combative and refused all field sobriety exercises and blood draw requests. He was placed under arrest for DUI Manslaughter and DUI Property Damage and booked into the Pasco County Jail.

Lauren Lee was employed as a Correctional Officer Sergeant at the Zephyrhills Correctional Institution in Zephyrhills, Florida, according to Kayla McLaughlin, Press Secretary for the Florida Department of Corrections.

A booking photo is not yet available.


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