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FHP Trooper Apprehends Suspect Who Targeted Her

~ Community support for law enforcement is critical ~

Tallahassee, Fla. – Yesterday evening, Trooper Vanessa Franceschi was conducting a traffic stop on Florida’s Turnpike in Miami-Dade County when a motorist intentionally struck her patrol car. The suspect fled through traffic, and without hesitation, Trooper Franceschi heroically pursued and skillfully conducted a Pursuit Intervention Technique (PIT) causing the suspect to stop. The suspect was arrested on scene, ensuring the safety of all other motorists on the road.

“This suspect’s actions were cowardly and Trooper Franceschi’s quick and courageous actions exemplify the best of the Florida Highway Patrol and all law enforcement officers,” said DHSMV Executive Director Terry L. Rhodes. “That she was targeted because she is a law enforcement officer is outrageous and we must continue to support our brave heroes by letting them know malicious attacks against law enforcement will not be tolerated in our communities.”

“I am grateful that Trooper Franceschi was not seriously injured and was able to act immediately to ensure the suspect was stopped from committing any additional crimes against law enforcement and the public,” said Colonel Gene S. Spaulding, Director of the Florida Highway Patrol. “We will continue to work with our law enforcement and criminal justice partners to ensure the suspect, and any suspects who target law enforcement, are prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.”

Trooper Franceschi sustained minor injuries following the crash; however, no other motorists were harmed. The suspect was charged with Aggravated Battery on a Law Enforcement Officer, Felony Fleeing and Eluding and Leaving the Scene of a Crash with Injuries. This matter remains under investigation and additional information and video will be released as it becomes available.

The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles provides highway safety and security through excellence in service, education and enforcement. The Department is leading the way to a safer Florida through the efficient and professional execution of its core mission: the issuance of driver licenses, vehicle tags and titles and operation of the Florida Highway Patrol. To learn more about DHSMV and the services offered, visit www.flhsmv.gov, follow us on Twitter @FLHSMV or find us on Facebook.