Weeki Wachee Man Arrested in Fatal Hudson Carjacking
Pasco deputies said the man admitted taking the deceased man’s Ford Explorer from a flea market.
PASCO COUNTY – A Weeki Wachee man was arrested in connection with the fatal carjacking of a Ford Explorer from a flea market in Hudson, the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office said.
Hermel Rene Levesque, 74, of Port Richey, the owner of the Ford, died in the April 27 carjacking. Jose Antonio Morales, 34-, of Weeki Wachee, was taken to the Regional Medical Center at Bayonet Point in critical condition. Morales has since been released from medical care and has been charged with one count of Homicide – Not Premeditated. (For a related story, click here.)
According to the arrest report, Morales abandoned his own vehicle – with the engine running, the driver’s door open, and three flat tires with damage to the rims – in the parking lot at 7736 State Road 52. That address is about 0.15 miles away from the St. Marks Church flea market, 7922 SR 52, where Mr. Levesque was unloading his Ford Explorer and trailer He was setting up tables and other items for a craft market, which was his usual habit on Fridays and Saturdays.
Morales walked up to the Ford, got in and drove away with Mr. Levesque in the back seat, deputies said.
Morales “drove recklessly” through the church parking lot in an “S” pattern, according to the arrest affidavit. Morales drove the Ford out of the church lot between a pole and a broken sign, over a small hill and onto SR 52.
Witnesses told deputies they saw the SUV and trailer on SR 52 crossing lanes with items falling out of the trailer. After about a half mile of “erratic and reckless driving,” deputies said Morales drove between a bench and a pole. At some point after that, the Ford and trailer overturned, separated and came to a rest right side up in the vacant lot at 8438 SR 52.
Deputies said they found Morales in the driver’s seat. He later admitted to stealing the Ford.
Mr. Levesque was deceased in the back from head injuries he suffered in the crash.
Pasco Sheriff | Crime | Carjacking | Arrests | Hermel Rene Levesque | Tampabay News
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