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Monday, May 29, 2023

Stolen car accident leads to driver’s death

The car’s passenger, a minor, was left in critical condition

One person was killed and a minor was in critical condition after a car accident last Tuesday morning. 

First responders found a stolen 2015 Chrysler 200 flipped sideways along with two stolen firearms on 1400 NW 23rd Ave., near the Wawa on the corner of Northwest 13th Street and Northwest 23rd Avenue, according to a Gainesville Police Department press release. 

Gainesville Fire Rescue removed two people from the car, and both were taken to UF Health Shands Hospital. Hospital staff announced the driver died and the passenger was left in critical condition. He is no longer in critical condition as of Sunday afternoon. 

The car was reported stolen last Monday. GPD last saw the car heading westbound on Northeast 23rd Avenue before the accident, according to the statement, but an officer spotted the car at the Sweetwater Square apartment complex prior to the accident at about 12:30 a.m. The car sped away from the complex as the officer tried to begin a traffic stop.

There have been about 50 more car accidents so far this year than were in the same time span last year, according to Gainesville Police Department data. 

There were more than 2,000 accidents in Gainesville through June 9 of this year, a notable increase from the 2020 figure of less than 1,700 accidents, which was likely affected by less traffic during the COVID-19 pandemic. This year’s accidents rank about 25% fewer than 2019’s pre-pandemic figure of more than 2,700 accidents during the first five months of the year. 

Those with knowledge about the situation and other accidents should reach out to the GPD’s Traffic Safety Team at 352-393-7744.

Contact Omar at Follow him on Twitter @OAteyah.

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Omar Ateyah

Omar Ateyah is a third-year journalism student and the Alligator's Race and Equity reporter. He previously served as the Alligator's crime reporter and as a news assistant on the Metro Desk. He enjoys going on long, thoughtful walks. 

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