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SUV driver sought in motorcycle crash

A woman struck the bikers on Hicks Road on Nov. 23 after leaving Overtime Sports Bar, highway troopers say.

By ALEX LEARY, Times Staff Writer
Published January 6, 2004
[Last modified January 6, 2004, 01:33:37]

HUDSON - Robert Bizzoco spent Thanksgiving in the hospital and Christmas in a wheelchair. The 21-year-old will not walk for months, his doctor says.

That's bad enough, but there is another dimension to his suffering - more troubling, more uncertain.

The driver of a sport utility vehicle that ran off Hicks Road and smashed into Bizzoco and a friend on Nov. 23 remains at large. "There is no justice for the pain," said Bizzoco of Port Richey.

Seeking information about the female driver, the Florida Highway Patrol issued a news release on Monday asking for tips that could lead to an arrrest.

"It's my New Year's resolution to solve this case," Trooper Ron Evans Jr. said. "I'm losing sleep over it."

The hit and run happened about 2:30 a.m. on Hicks Road, south of Shady Road between State Road 52 and Hudson Avenue.

Bizzoco and a friend, Matthew Filipiak, had been stopped moments earlier by a Pasco County sheriff's deputy and cautioned about speed. The two were about to get on their motorcycles again when a silver Lincoln Navigator appeared.

"She drove off the road and creamed them," Evans said. Bizzoco was most seriously injured. His right leg and pelvis were broken and he spent nearly three weeks in the hospital. An electrician, he has been out of work since then.

Evans said the driver met several people at the Overtime Sports Bar on SR 52 and agreed to give them a ride.

Along the way, a passenger apparently realized the driver was in no condition to drive and forced her to stop at 7-Eleven. "One of them said, "You're worse than us,' " Evans said.

Three passengers got out, and the disturbance caught the attention of a store clerk who called 911. But the driver kept going, heading north on Hicks Road. The driver continued even after hitting the motorcyclists, Evans said.

Based on interviews with the passengers and people at the bar, Evans was able to piece together a description of the driver. She is a Hispanic female, about 5 feet 9 and goes by the name Victoria.

Evans asks that anyone with information about the woman or the crash call him toll-free at 1-800-235-6019, ext. 137.

"This case needs justice," he said.

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