Deputies from the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office (PCSO)assigned to the Major Accident Investigation Team (MAIT) are investigating a single vehicle crash at 28th Avenue South and 4th Street South in St. Petersburg.
According to PCSO, at approximately 2:54 a.m. on Thursday, October 14, 2021, patrol deputies in the area of 66th Street and 49th Avenue North heard gunshots and observed a 2017 Dodge Charger fleeing the area at a high speed. Deputies learned the driver was seen shooting a gun in the air before speeding away.
The Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office Flight Unit located the vehicle and followed as it crossed the Skyway Bridge into Manatee County. The vehicle turned around and reentered Pinellas County, later striking stop sticks which deflated the tires. The vehicle failed to negotiate a curve at 28th Avenue South and 4th Street South and crashed into a tree.
The driver, 27-year-old Haidar Ateia of Clearwater, ran from the vehicle and was apprehended a short distance later. He was transported to a local hospital with non-life-threatening injuries and a Blood Alcohol Concentration of .142. He will be booked into the Pinellas County Jail when he’s discharged.
Deputies say the passengers, 25-year-old Travis Craig of St. Petersburg and 32-year-old Latoyria Robinson of Hudson, received non-life-threatening injuries and were transported to a local hospital for treatment.
According to investigators, speed and impairment appear to be factors in the crash.
Ateia is facing charges of DUI with Serious Bodily Injury, Fleeing and Eluding, Leaving the Scene of a Crash with Serious Bodily Injury, and Habitual Traffic Offender.
The investigation continues.
Deputies say this does not appear to be related to the overnight and on-going homicide investigation.