Drunk driver causes vehicle to crash into Hillsborough County patrol car

RUSKIN, Fla. — A drunk driver crashed into another vehicle, causing it to strike a Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office patrol car.

On June 22 at about 11:45 p.m., Panfilo Hernandez Saldana was driving north on 41 Highway S. towards Valroy Rd. in Ruskin. HCSO deputies and FHP were at the same intersection investigating a separate traffic crash.

The driver of a 2011 Honda Accord saw the emergency lights and stopped so the deputies could cross.

Saldana failed to stop behind the Honda, striking the rear bumper and causing it to hit the HCSO marked patrol vehicle parked on the shoulder of the lane.

Saldana was uninjured, but the passenger in his vehicle was taken to the hospital for possible injuries. Both occupants of the Honda were also taken to the hospital for minor injuries.

The total damage to the three vehicles is estimated at $12,500.

Deputies say Saldana had bloodshot, watery eyes, a strong odor of alcohol and his speech was slurred. They also say he was unsteady on his feet and had a BAC of .154/.156.

He was arrested for DUI with Property Damage, DUI over 0.15 and No Valid Drivers License.

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