SANFORD, Fla. – A 37-year-old man was arrested Monday in connection with two fatal hit-and-run crashes near the same Sanford intersection.
Sanford police said Michael John Kraft was arrested on two counts of leaving the scene of a crash with fatal injuries, two counts of hit-and-run failure to remain at a crash, two counts of vehicular homicide and one count of refusal to submit to DUI test after license is suspended.
According to police, Kraft was driving his four-door Jaguar east on State Road 46 near Summerlin Avenue when he struck a motorcyclist who was traveling east in the lane next to him. Kraft didn’t stop and continued east on State Road 46 before making a U-turn and heading west, police said.
According to authorities, Kraft drove over a median and across the eastbound lanes, striking the motorcyclist again and a good Samaritan who was helping the biker.
Kraft’s arrest report identified the motorcyclist as Vincent Russo and the good Samaritan as Jenica Campbell.
Witnessed told police Kraft “sped down and attempted to hit a group of people” striking Campbell and the crash victim.
“There’s a number of statements that he’s made that’s going to be all part of the judicial process in figuring out what his motive is. Right now, we know that the motorcyclist and the Good Samaritan are completely unknown to Kraft, there is no prior motivation there,” said Sanford Police Public Information Officer Bianca Gillett.
Several witnesses called 911 when the motorcyclist was initially hit.
“He’s bleeding from the head real bad,” a caller told dispatchers.
“He didn’t even stop for the motorcycle guy,” another caller told dispatch.
Police said Kraft then drove through a fence and onto a service road for the Sanford Orlando International Airport, where he crashed into a ditch. He was then taken into custody, police said.
“We have two people that have lost their life, tragically, that had Kraft pulled his vehicle over immediately called 911, both of those individuals could be alive today,” Gillett said.
Investigators said Campbell was well known in the community.
“The young lady attends one of our churches here in town has been a pillar of the society — has assisted us in our organization as a partner with getting into the community and giving back to the community — and it is really sad to see that someone who stopped to help someone lost their lives,” Sanford Police Chief Cecil Smith said.
Officers said Kraft appeared to be under the influence of a controlled substance. According to the arrest report, Kraft had bloodshot eyes, mumbled speech, body tremors and constant body movements when he was talking to investigators.
According to the report, Kraft told officers he was being chased by another vehicle and was trying to get to Orange City. He said he was being chased from Jacksonville but could not recall by what type of vehicle.
At Central Florida Regional Hospital a test of Kraft’s urine found he was under the influence of a CNS stimulant and a co-occurring mental illness, according to the report.
According to the National Institute of Health, Central nervous system stimulants can be used to treat ADHD, narcolepsy or excessive sleepiness, however, CNS stimulants also include drugs that are not to treat a medical condition including cocaine and ecstasy or MDMA.
Investigators are asking witnesses or anyone with dashcam video to contact the Sanford Police Department.
Kraft is charged with two counts of hit-and-run resulting in a death, homicide-negligence and DUI resulting in death. A Seminole County judge set Kraft’s bond at $150,500. Kraft also can’t consume alcohol and must wear a GPS monitor.
#MediaBriefing PIO Bianca Gillett gives update on the investigation of two Traffic Homicides that occurred on SR 46 earlier this afternoon.Posted by Sanford Police Department on Monday, March 29, 2021