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Longboat Key Tuesday, May 8, 2018 3 years ago

Gulf of Mexico Drive reopens after Longboat Key fatality investigation

85-year-old man was struck by two cars and killed around 6 a.m., police say.
by: Bret Hauff Staff Writer

Gulf of Mexico Drive was closed for hours on Tuesday morning as Longboat Police and the Florida Highway Patrol investigated the death of a man who was struck by two cars in the early-morning hours. 

Warren Roberts

The victim, who police identified as Warren Roberts, 85, of Longboat Key was hit by two northbound cars around 6 a.m., 40 minutes before sunrise. Police said the drivers of the cars, who were identified as 71-year-old Richard Sulio, of Palmetto, and 41-year-old Cheri Zupa, of Longboat Key, stopped and cooperated with police.

There was "no criminal component" to the investigation, police said. 

There were no other injuries, but Sulio was taken to Blake Memorial Hospital after experiencing chest pains. 

According to the FHP investigation, both of the cars were driving north on Gulf of Mexico Drive, as Roberts was on the east side of the road. The FHP said Roberts then crossed in front of Sulio's Hyundai Tucson, which hit him. Zupa's Mercedes also struck Roberts.

At the scene, adjacent to Whitney Beach, a pair of shoes, a pair of socks and a cane were among the pieces of evidence FHP investigators were examining in a 100 yard long scene. "It was a mess," Longboat Police Chief Pete Cumming said.

The road closure was between the 6800 block and 7000 block of Gulf of Mexico Drive. Police reopened the road around 12:40 p.m.





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