In a shocking incident, police officials from Florida has confirmed the death of a 5-year-old girl in Florida after she was thrown off a bridge by her own father. According to ABC News, the incident reportedly happened over the Dick Misener Bridge located in St.Petersburg early Thursday morning. The report confirms that the child was thrown off the bridge after the driver stopped the car on the approach road towards the bridge. After the girl was thrown, the man simply drove off nonchalantly. The girl fell nearly 62 feet to her death.
According to WFLA, a spokesperson from the St.Petersburg Police Department confirmed that a police officer was witness to the entire incident. An off-duty police officer on his way home first saw a Chrysler PT Cruiser pass him over the speed limit and decided to give a chase. The vehicle was going at over 100 miles an hour. The police officer switched his lights on and followed the vehicle. After going some distance, the officer saw the PT Cruiser stop as it approached the top of the Dick Misener Bridge. The man had a girl in his arms which he simply tossed off the bridge. After the child was thrown, the man walked into his car and drove off.
The man was eventually arrested by police officials from Manatee County nearly 30 minutes later. He was identified as John Jonchuck Jr, 25. Police believe that he was the father of the child he tossed off the bridge. Jonchuck reportedly has a criminal history and had a couple of cases of battery and non-domestic battery arrests in the past.
Meanwhile, the police officer who saw the girl being thrown immediately alerted authorities who started a rescue operation. They eventually found the girl – but it was too late to save her.
St. Petersburg police spokesperson Yolanda Fernandez said.
“It’s unfathomable I mean and officers see all kinds of things but it’s still very difficult to see something like this unfold before your eyes what could make someone throw someone over a railing let alone your own child? How could you possibly understand that?”
Following the incident which took place a little after midnight, police officials closed traffic on the bridge which was eventually reopened. Investigation is still on and the US Coast Guard too has been called in for help. Meanwhile, the suspect has been taken to the Pinellas County Jail. He is charged with first degree murder, aggravated fleeing and eluding and aggravated assault with a motor vehicle on a law enforcement officer.
[Image Via WFLA]