Florida Highway Patrol troopers arrested a citizen of Mexico, identified as Bertin Jaimes, in connection with a serious motor vehicle accident that left a Pasco County deputy hospitalized in serious condition. The accident occurred around 4:20 a.m. on New Year’s Day near the intersection of State Route 54 and Loury Drive. According to an arrest report and other information released by the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office, Deputy Darrin Hill was on routine patrol travelling westbound on State Route 54 in Pasco County, Florida when an eastbound Ford F-150 operated by Jaimes crossed the center lane and slammed head-on into Deputy Hill’s patrol car. The collision seriously injured the deputy, totaled the patrol car, and disabled the F-150. Rather than stay at the scene or summon aid for the injured deputy, Jaimes fled the accident on foot. According to sheriffs officials, Deputy Hill activated the emergency button on his portable radio, alerting other deputies that he was in trouble. Emergency medical personnel airlifted Deputy Hill to St. Joseph’s Hospital. According to the police report, papers found in the disabled F-150 revealed information regarding the identity and address of the truck’s driver, Bertin Jaimes. Investigators interviewed several of Jaimes’ family members in Zephyrhills in an effort to locate Jaimes. Officials ultimately charged five of those individuals with Obstruction of Justice after deputies learned they lied repeatedly to deputies during the investigation. Confronted with the inconsistencies in their stories, the family members finally revealed the location of Jaimes. Officials identified those arrested and charged with Obstruction as Jazmine Sanchez-Aguirre, 21, Jose Carmen Jaimes-Jaimes, 29, Gladys Patricia Soto, 24, all of Zephyrhills, and Raymundo Soto, 54, of Land O’ Lakes, Florida. Troopers located Jaimes, and during an interview Jaimes made incriminating admissions that led troopers to charge him with Leaving the Scene of an Accident with Injuries, felony Hit and Run, and Driving on an Expired Florida License. Both Raymundo Soto and Gladys Soto posted bond and are no longer in custody. Bertin Jaimes, Jazmine Sanchez Aguirre, Jose Carmen Jaimes-Jaimes, who informed deputies they were citizens of Mexico, remain in jail with State charges and federal immigration detainers pending. The presence of an immigration detainer indicates that federal immigration officials possess sufficient evidence to believe that all three have no right to be or remain lawfully in the U.S., and are subject to deportation back to their country of origin.
January 2, 2014