Couple killed in Brandon collision Monday

Posted at 12:08 PM, May 31, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-31 12:41:53-04

A well-known Riverview couple died in a car collision Monday morning.

Richard Crete, 54, and Tonya Crete, 58, owned and operated Rich's Backyard Birds off Lithia Pinecrest Road in Valrico.

According to Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office deputies, Sanita Sookdeo, 48, of Dover was speeding and heading south on Parsons Avenue in a 2007 GMC Denali when she slammed into the back of the Crete's 2003 Acura.

The Denali's wheels rolled over the Acura, deputies say.

Sookdeo's Denali continued in a southeast direction, hit a concrete embankment on the corner of East Jersey Street and became airborne for a second time, deputies explained.

The Denali hit a Carolla heading westbound on East Jersey Avenue and then hit a tree before landing upside down, deputies say.

Richard and Tanya were severely injured as the rear of their car had been severely crushed, deputies say.  Their car came to rest on the east shoulder facing south.

Richard Crete was transported to Tampa General Hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Tanya Crete was transported to Brandon Hospital where she was pronounced dead.

Sookdeo was transported to Tampa General Hospital with serious injuries.

The occupants of the other two cars involved were not injured, deputies say.

Deputies do not believe alcohol or drugs are involved.

Deputies say charges are pending.

Many customers and friends who knew the couple have been showing up at their store leaving flowers and notes.

Family members have left a note on the door of the business letting customers know of the tragedy.

They added the couple's cat, Audobon, is still at the shop and she is being cared for daily.

Customer Cindy Butner broke down in tears as she placed flowers outside the couple's store.

"I didn't want to believe it," said Butner.  "I was hoping when I drove by here that his store would be open."