Man Shoots Himself Prior to Crashing his Car at Showtime Dragstrip in Apparent Suicide
Posted: November 13, 2016
Shortly after 10 PM, on Saturday, November 12, 2016, units from Pinellas Park Fire Department and Sunstar Paramedics were dispatched to the Showtime Dragstrip for a vehicle crash. The Dragstrip is located at 4398 126th Ave N in Pinellas Park.
The races had already ended for the night and many of the spectators were leaving the property when the driver’s vehicle left the roadway and veered into the woods. The rescue crews had significant difficulty accessing the injured man as his vehicle entered a heavily wooded area surrounding the property.
Paramedics determined that the man was deceased due to obvious trauma to the head and injuries from the crash.
Pinellas Park Police Traffic Homicide Investigators arrived on the scene of the single vehicle crash to conduct an investigation.
Investigators discovered multiple witnesses who had observed 58 year-old Robert Hancock of St. Petersburg, operating his 2015 silver Chevy Malibu at a high rate of speed traveling northbound on the drag strip track and abruptly veered to his left leaving the roadway and coming to a final rest in the mangroves / wooded area just off the drag strip.
Many people reported that Hancock was a regular at the track always wearing his Dale Earhart attire. It is also reported that he made statements about dying earlier in the evening.
During the investigation, officers located a substantial amount of blood in the interior of the vehicle. Hancock had a single gunshot wound to the right temple area of his head. A .380 caliber Ruger LCP handgun was located at the driver’s feet inside the vehicle. Witnesses who know Hancock indicated that while he was at the speedway he had been acting “aggravated and distant” for unknown reasons.
Investigators working with the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office Forensics Section and the Pinellas County Medical Examiner’s Office have determined that Hancock died as a result of a self-inflicted gunshot wound as he was operating his vehicle causing the crash.