No connection between St. Pete car crash, dead man

Joy riding kids ditch car on front lawn

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - When two unusual events happened so close together at almost the same time, neighbors like Brenda Washington were convinced they had to be connected.

"I just tried to figure in my head what one has to do with the other," Washington said.  

The southeast St. Petersburg resident was getting ready for church Sunday morning, when she looked outside her front window.

"There was a car on my lawn," Washington said.  Her home at 3621 Sea Robin Drive near Coquina Key Park was the final resting place of an out-of-control car that had careened off of a stop sign, then a power pole, and eventually her yard.

St. Petersburg police said the car was driven by a 14-year old with a 12-year old passenger.  They had taken the vehicle from a relative to go joy-riding, according to investigators.  They lost control on Sunfish Drive SE, and after the crash, the boys took off on foot.  

Just across the street and a few doors down was an even more serious situation.  Jeremy Mayers, 20, of 921 64th Ave. South, was dying on a front lawn.  Paramedics were called to 3632 Sea Robin Drive where Mayers was found.  After an attempt to revive him, Mayers was pronounced dead at Bayfront Medical Center.  

"You just don't get that.  A crash here and then a body over there," said Robert Baez, who's house is across the street from where the car crashed.

"Something must have been connected," Baez said.  

His sentiment was echoed by numerous residents stunned by the course of events that had police combing through yards with their guns drawn, possibly in search of whoever was responsible for Mayers' death.  

But St. Petersburg police made it clear: there is no connection.

"It's all coincidental at this point," said Mike Puetz, a St. Petersburg police spokesman.

"There is no evidence based on the medical examiner's report suggesting that he has any trauma that resulted from an automobile accident," Puetz said.  

Police are still considering charges against the minors for their role in the car crash.  

An investigation is underway into what led to Mayers' death.  Police are asking for help with case.

If you have information about what happened, call St. Petersburg police at (727) 893-7780.  

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