The driver of the vehicle James Lepore (DOB 09/07/1990), of 3517 Santa Barbara Boulevard, Cape Coral has succumbed from his injuries associated with the traffic crash.
(Initial Press Release - 11/17/13 )
The occupants of the vehicle, a 2003 Hyundai Santa Fe, are identified as:
Driver (trapped): James Lepore, age 23, of 3517 Santa Barbara Boulevard, Cape Coral - life threatening injuries (airlifted to the Burn Unit of Tampa General Hospital)
Front seat passenger (trapped): Francis Gannon, age 15, of 910S.E. 43rd Terrace, Cape Coral - life threatening injuries (airlifted to the Burn Unit of Tampa General Hospital)
Rear seat passenger (trapped): Asia Tannasse, age 17, of 11732 S.W. 22nd Terrace, Cape Coral - remains hospitalized with life threatening injuries.
Rear seat passenger/driver's side (pulled from vehicle): Brooke Bosley, age 16, of 1411 S.E. 17th Terrace, Cape Coral - remains hospitalized with non-life threatening injuries.
Preliminary investigation confirms the vehicle was traveling north on Estero Boulevard near the 6000 block at a high rate of speed. Further analysis will be conducted to determine actual speed, however, it can be said the driver was unable to turn through the left hand curve at the rate of travel. The vehicle exited the roadway to the northeast, struck a road sign, sideswiped a concrete wall and struck a second concrete wall head-on. The momentum carried the Hyundai through the concrete wall before striking a tree on the right front corner panel. The impact with the tree resulted in a counterclockwise rotation of the vehicle. At final rest the front of the car was facing southwest.
The vehicle burst into flames most likely when it collided with the concrete wall. In addition to the excessive speed of the vehicle, alcohol is believed to be a factor. The investigation continues.
Updates will be provided via email.
(Initial Press Release - 11/17/13 - 8:45a)
On Sunday, November 17, 2013, at 3:58a.m., a 9-1-1 operator in the Communications Center of the Lee County Sheriff's Office received a call about a traffic crash. The incident occurred at 6025 Estero Boulevard, Fort Myers Beach, Florida. Deputies and Fort Myers Beach Fire and Rescue responded to the scene to find a single vehicle had crashed at a high rate of speed into a concrete wall and trees at the entrance to the Ascension Catholic Church. The driver and two passengers were trapped in the burning vehicle and a fourth occupant had been pulled out by a passerby who was delivering newspapers.
Life saving efforts began immediately, but the impact of the crash made it difficult to extricate the individuals inside. In fact, one passenger was trapped for about an hour. In the meantime, one passenger was transported to the hospital and three helicopters responded to airlift the remaining three occupants. The Medflight aircraft awaited at Lover's Key and transported the three victims of the crash, as they were brought to them, to the Trauma Center at Lee Memorial Hospital. Subsequently, one of the crash victims has been airlifted to the Burn Center in Tampa.
Due to the nature of the crash, a Traffic Homicide Detective with the Sheriff's Office Traffic Unit has been assigned to investigate. A portion of Estero Boulevard was closed to thru traffic for 4 hours. It has been reopened. Names and additional information will be provided as it becomes available. The investigation continues.
Media inquiries are directed to Lieutenant Larry King, Public Information Officer, via pager.