A second fatality is now reported as a result of the Friday afternoon crash. Nineteen (19) year old Taylor Messina did not recover from injuries sustained and passed away while hospitalized this afternoon. Tyler Messina remains in critical condition.
(Update # 1 - 10/19/13)
Next of kin has been notified and the driver of the 1997 Toyota is 22 year old Clayton Hayes (d.o.b. 4/13/91) of 5517 Petunia Drive, McKinney Texas. The injured passengers are Tyler and Taylor Messina, both age 19 (d.o.b. 8/26/94), of 2002 East 14th Street, Lehigh Acres. The driver of the 1997 Peterbilt semi-truck, 43 year old Jose Machin of Miami Gardens, Florida was not injured and not at fault in the crash. It's not known, at this time, why Mr. Hayes failed to stop at the posted stop sign while attempting to turn south on Joel Boulevard. Media inquiries are directed to Lieutenant Larry King, Public Information Officer, via pager.
(Original Release 10/18/13) On Friday, October 18, 2013 at 4:31 p.m., the Lee County Sheriff's Office received multiple calls about a serious traffic crash. The incident occurred at the intersection of Joel Boulevard and East 15th Street in Lehigh Acres, Florida. Deputies responded to the scene.
Upon arrival, an 18-wheel semi-truck and trailer was located just south of the East 15th Street intersection and a silver, Toyota 4-Runner, was found on its side in a grassy area on the east side of Joel Boulevard, also south of the intersection. The driver of the SUV was pronounced dead at the scene, while two passengers in the vehicle were transported as trauma alerts to the Emergency Room at Lee Memorial Hospital. They are reported in critical condition. Due to the nature of the incident, the Sheriff's Office Traffic Unit was requested and a Traffic Homicide Detective assigned to investigate. The Florida Highway Patrol and Lehigh Acres Fire Department also provided assistance.
Preliminary details indicate the driver of the Toyota was eastbound on East 15th Street, failed to stop at the stop sign at the intersection and drove into the path of the semi. The driver of the truck was unable to avoid colliding with the driver side of the vehicle. A load of preformed concrete slabs were jettisoned from the trailer as a result of the crash. The driver was not injured. The names of those involved are not available for release at this time.
The District 21 Medical Examiner will conduct an autopsy to determine official cause of death. An update will provided upon next of kin notification for the driver. The investigation continues.