Tampa woman arrested for deliberately hitting couple after dispute

A woman in Tampa is being held on felony accusations of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. It comes after police claimed she purposefully drove her car into a Riverview couple.

Gayle Deen and Ronaldo Baptisme were leaving a pub in Ybor City and headed to their car when the event occurred in the early am hours of Wednesday, Nov. 29.

According to authorities, the pair was “involved in a disturbance with several unknown males” when Donatty Salcedo, 24, drove by and “interrupted the interaction between the two groups.”

Tampa woman arrested for deliberately hitting couple after dispute

As per the allegation, one of the unknown individuals broke off Salcedo’s driver-side rearview mirror as a result of the disruption. The gang then split off, according to police, with the unknown individuals going away and the couple remaining in the street.

Salcedo allegedly approached Baptisme and demanded that he pay for the damage to her car. When Baptisme declined, “the suspect became angry and drove off, but stopped approximately 100 feet away.” She allegedly then put her car in reverse and crashed into both victims.

Gayle Deen claimed she was stuck between Salcedo’s and her own vehicle, and her partner was flung face-first onto the pavement.

“I noticed them reversing at a high rate of speed.” So I attempted to get ourselves out of the way. But, sadly, it wasn’t fast enough,” Deen explained.

Deen’s knee was broken, and Baptisme was knocked unconscious for several hours with a severe concussion.

“I was totally terrified when I saw him. “I thought he was dead at the time,” Deen added.

“To be honest, I don’t recall getting hit at all. “It’s not like I hit my head that hard,” Baptisme explained. “Everything from that day is still a blur.”

Detectives with the Tampa Police Department have been looking into the incident since it happened on Nov. 29, and they claim surveillance video played a significant role in the arrest.

“It was absolutely intentional,” Detective Tyler Shue stated. “There’s video, and it’s clear that she intended to hit them with her car.” She moved away from them, drove in the opposite direction, then reversed and crashed into them.”

Before the arrest, officers contacted Salcedo at her house, according to the police report.

“In the video, the suspect positively identified herself and stated that the male victim had threatened her.” “She also stated that she had accidentally put her vehicle in reverse rather than driving prior to striking the victims,” according to the police report. “This is refuted by the video, which shows the suspect intentionally steering her vehicle into both victims.”

As Baptisme and Deen recover physically, they hope their story will serve as a reminder of the golden rule.

“Treat people as you would your mother, sister, or any other family member.” “You never know who that person is to someone,” remarked Deen.

The pair claims they will be unable to work for several months while they heal physically, but they are now facing medical expenditures.

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