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A Florida woman is behind bars for allegedly blowing through a red light and smashing into a Lexus — killing the driver — all in a futile attempt to flee a pair of car pileups.
Katlynn Smith, 28, was behind the wheel of another person’s black 2011 Toyota Camry in Pinellas Park, Florida at around 10 a.m. on Saturday at the busy intersection of 66th Street and 70th Avenue when cops said she failed to stop at the red traffic signal and collided into and killed 53-year-old Kanh Nguyen, of Largo, Florida, while he was driving his 2011 Lexus.
Smith was charged with vehicular homicide and leaving the scene of a crash, Pinellas County jail records show.
“[Smith] was driving into the intersection and drove directly into the side of him,” Pinellas Park Police Department Sgt. John Shea told Oxygen.com.
Smith had allegedly been attempting to flee two previous car crashes moments before.
The first occurred at the intersection of Starkey and Bryn Dairy Roads, according to a police release.
The uninjured driver decided to trail Smith.
The witness “followed Smith who drove recklessly along Bryn Dairy Road,” according to the release.
That victim phoned Pinellas Park Police dispatch and informed them that Smith allegedly again failed to stop as she passed through Belcher Road, plowing into “a vehicle stopped for the red light at the intersection,” according to the release.
Nobody suffered injuries in the second crash, police confirmed.
Then, Smith allegedly didn't stop and hit Nguyen’s Lexus as it crossed through the intersection at 70th Avenue. Smith was rushed to a hospital after suffering "serious injuries" as a result of the third fatal crash, first reported by WTVT, a Fox Station in Tampa.
The Camry, Shea confirmed, did not belong to Smith. But he noted that it wasn’t stolen and Smith had a valid driver's license.
Shea said that investigators are closing in on what set Smith off on the alleged series of car crashes.
“We have an idea, but it’s not going to be released at this time,” he said.
Smith has been cooperating with the investigation and given statements, Shea said.
While there were no weapons or drugs found in Smith's car, it’s unclear if drugs or alcohol played a role in the incident.
“That’s still under investigation,” he said.
Smith has since been formally charged and a bond of $50,000 was set.
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