FHP arrest hit-and-run driver in fatal crash that closed U.S. 301 exit on I-4 in Hillsborough

Posted at 5:56 AM, Oct 18, 2017
and last updated 2017-10-18 14:25:43-04

Law enforcement officials have charged a man with leaving the scene of a crash involving a death in an early morning fatal hit-and-run involving a bicyclist early Wednesday.

Christopher Cole, 44, of Tampa surrendered to troopers at FHP headquarters. 

The crash occurred just after 3:30 a.m. on Wednesday in the eastbound lanes of I-4, just past U.S. 301 and before I-75. 

FHP Troopers say that Cole, the driver of a silver 2016 C-300 Silver Mercedes Benz was traveling on the eastbound I-4 exit ramp leading to US-301. The driver overtook and collided with a 45-year-old male from Brandon on a bicycle. The impact ejected the bicyclist and propelled the bicycle to final rest along the roadway shoulder.

The bicyclist sustained fatal injuries and was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash. 

The bicyclist's name will be released pending next of kin notification. 

Cole left the scene of the crash before law enforcement arrived on scene.

FHP Investigators located debris and vehicle parts at the scene helping them determine the make and model of the vehicle. They determined that the Mercedes had damage to the right mirror and right fender.