TAMPA - A Hillsborough County deputy was killed Tuesday morning when a semi tractor-trailer and the deputy's cruiser collided at Florida Avenue and Scott Street just south of I-275 in downtown Tampa.
Investigators say about 5:15 a.m., Deputy Mark A. Longway, 48, was traveling north on Florida Avenue and went underneath the semi, which was eastbound on Scott Street.
Longway died at the scene. "It was a very severe impact ... We're having a difficult time extracting the vehicle," said Hillsborough Sheriff's Office Chief Deputy Jose Docobo.
The crash was most likely due to a failure to stop at a red light, but investigators have not said who may have been at fault.
It's unclear if there were any witnesses. Docobo said there was very little traffic in the area at the time of the crash. Traffic homicide investigators are asking that anyone who witnessed the accident to call the Sheriff's Office at 813-247-8200.
Longway was assigned to the Port Security Detail, according to a Sheriff's Office statement. He graduated from Hillsborough High School in 1980, and was the recipient of an Integrity Grant scholarship. He was in the Air Force for 21 years, including service in Afghanistan, before moving on to Hillsborough County.
When he joined the Sheriff's Office, Longway said "This uniform is just a different color. I'm still serving. First it was my country, now it is my county."
Deputy Longway is survived by his wife and two adult daughters.
Visitation will be held on Monday, September 27, from 9:30 a.m. until 11:00 a.m. at Idlewild Baptist Church, located on North Dale Mabry Hwy, approximately one-half mile north of Van Dyke Rd. in Lutz. Longway will receive a Full Honors Funeral, and the memorial service will immediately follow visitation at the church beginning at 11:00 a.m.
This is the second accident involving a Hillsborough officer in less than a week.
Deputy Deborah Walker was badly injured last week when a crane/truck crashed and flattened her cruiser. Her condition is improving.
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