Leesburg man admits to hit-and-run, claims he thought he hit animal, police say

Children in car confirmed to police crash occurred

LEESBURG, Fla. – A man driving with a suspended license confessed to a hit-and-run crash once he learned his children told investigators the crash happened, according to the Leesburg Police Department.

The department responded to a 47-year-old motorcyclist in the roadway near Montclair Road and Lone Oak Drive Wednesday evening. The man, identified as Joseph McMurrey, was taken to the hospital where he was pronounced dead a couple hours later.

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According to an arrest affidavit, an officer noticed fluid from a vehicle at the site of the crash that headed toward Thomas Avenue along with pieces of a vehicle that had “HONDA” on it. Police were able to identify a white Honda crossing Thomas Avenue around the time the crash occurred using surveillance video from nearby businesses.

Later on, an officer conducting a security check found a car at Montclair Village, an apartment complex nearby, that had “substantial” damage to the front of the car, according to police

Police then spoke with Pierre Lambaren Resendez, 35, who initially told officers it was his wife’s car and “he wasn’t driving,” records show

When officers asked to speak to his wife, he then said she was in the hospital and that someone possibly stole his car.

Investigators said they asked to speak with the man’s children, ages 8 and 12. According to the police, the children confirmed there was a crash while their father was driving home. The department said Resendez then confessed when confronted with that information, but claimed he thought he hit an animal.

Resendez told police he was driving home and wasn’t wearing his glasses as he normally would. As he made a turn, Resendez said he was “blinded by the solar glare” and the airbags deployed, according to the affidavit. The department said he told officers he never checked to see what he hit and headed home.

Police said the suspect hit the motorcycle head-on during that turn.

Resendez faces charges of vehicular homicide, leaving the scene of a crash involving death and driving with a suspended license involving death.

About the Author:

Brenda Argueta is a digital journalist who joined ClickOrlando.com in March 2021. She graduated from UCF and returned to Central Florida after working in Colorado.