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Deputies chase male driver in dress

By CAMILLE C. SPENCER
Published August 26, 2006


John C. Turner's trouble with the law started about 7:45 p.m. Thursday, after he lifted his white dress and exposed himself to a woman and her 14-year-old daughter, authorities said.

By nightfall, Turner, 27, had fled from deputies, driven onto a golf course, hit a deputy's car and ended up in a canal, where he was bitten on the arm by a sheriff's dog, authorities said.

Here's what happened, according to reports from the Pasco County Sheriff's Office:

An unidentified woman and her daughter were on their way home about 7:45 p.m. when they saw a man parked at the bend of Utica Drive and Rhodes Road in Hudson. The man stood outside the driver's side of a 1997 black Dodge pickup. Both doors of the truck were open.

The woman said the man, bald with tattoos, a moustache and a goatee, lifted his white dress and began fondling himself.

The woman tried to get the tag number from the truck. Then she saw the man get into the truck and follow her west on New York Avenue.

The woman flagged down a deputy, who stopped the truck at Old Dixie Highway and Gulf Way.

But when the deputy got out of his vehicle, the man sped off, heading east on Gulf Way.

The man headed north on Kemper Drive and drove through a ditch and onto the Sea Pines golf course. Then he headed west on New York Avenue and crashed into the steel gates at the Highlands subdivision in Hudson, causing $5,000 in damage.

Deputies lost sight of the truck and called in the sheriff's air unit, which spotted a vehicle matching the black truck's description on Majestic Boulevard.

The man drove through residential streets before cutting through the Kmart parking lot on U.S. 19, just north of State Road 52, with deputies on his tail and a sheriff's helicopter hovering above.

Then the man drove into Gulf View Square mall's parking lot in Port Richey and crashed into a major's patrol car.

He headed toward Suncoast RV Park on U.S. 19, then got out of the truck and ran into the woods near the park.

He ended up in a canal about 8:30 p.m., where he was bitten on the left arm by a sheriff's dog, sheriff's spokesman Doug Tobin said.

After he was placed in a deputy's patrol car, he complained of chest pain and was taken to Community Hospital in New Port Richey.

Turner told deputies that he drank liquor and had cocaine prior to the chase but didn't recall exposing himself to anyone.

After his release from the hospital, Turner, of 11351 Edison Avenue, New Port Richey, was taken to the Land O'Lakes Detention Center.

He was being held in lieu of $42,000 bail on charges of lewd and lascivious behavior, fleeing and eluding, criminal mischief, driving with a license suspended or revoked with knowledge, driving under the influence with property damage, and DUI.