Crime

Victims ID'd in fatal weekend crash, all from Key West; driver still held

A Sugarloaf Key man remained in the Monroe County jail Monday in lieu of $250,000 bond following his arrest early Saturday morning in connection with a fatal hit-and-run crash in Key West.

The victim who died was Karen Cherry, 54, who police spokeswoman Alyson Crean said lived at the Sunset Marina condos on Stock Island. Three others, also Sunset Marina residents, were seriously injured.

Daniel Mira Jr., 36, a Sugarloaf Key cook, was arrested in the Regal Cinemas Key West parking lot, where he was found with his Nissan Altima on fire shortly after the crash, which happened around 11:20 p.m. Friday.

He's charged with three counts of failure to stop and remain following a crash with injuries, one of failure to stop and remain following a crash involving death, two counts of hit and run involving damage and one count of marijuana possession.

He was driving a Nissan Altima when he allegedly ran into two motor scooters carrying the four victims at North Roosevelt Boulevard and 14th Street.

Timothy Cherry, 56, and Robert Tosi, 55, were airlifted to Ryder Trauma Center in Miami with head and body injuries. Arline Tosi, 55, was transported to Lower Keys Medical Center with head and body injuries.

According to the arrest affidavit from Officer Alexander Rodriguez Jr., a witness told police she was traveling east on North Roosevelt when she heard "a crashing noise," and "saw a motor scooter appear to be driving itself as if someone fell off."

She told the officer she saw a Nissan switch lanes and speed off and followed it into the theater parking lot, where it caught fire. She said the driver was wearing a red hat and black shirt, which Mira was wearing when police arrived, Rodriguez wrote in his report.

Two other witnesses provided similar accounts, with one of them telling police he saw a dark-colored car strike two scooters "at a high rate of speed." He said the passengers were "crushed" under the car. He, too, followed the car into the theater parking lot.

Mira Jr. is scheduled to appear before Monroe County Circuit Court Judge Peary Fowler Nov. 13. 

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