According to the St. Petersburg police department, the officer, 32-year-old Antonio Romeu, who has been a sworn officer since October 2007, had just turned from 103rd Ave North to head south on MLK Street, when the driver, heading north in the southbound lanes, hit his cruiser. He tried to avoid a collision, but was unsuccessful.
A witness confirmed Romeu tried flashing his emergency lights to tell the driver she was heading the wrong way. She still hit him, which spun his cruiser around into the grass. He radioed for dispatchers to respond and failed to respond to their radio calls.
They used GPS to find his location and transported both individuals to Bayfront Medical Center for treatment with non-life threatening injuries.
The woman is identified as 21-year-old Madison Pratt Best, who was charged with DUI. She refused a field sobriety test and has been transported to the Pinellas County Jail.
The St. Petersburg police department reports that Best has been involved in at least four prior accidents of which their department has investigated since 2010. She has been cited for careless driving three times, failure to yield and leaving the scene of an accident involving property damage.
Romeu is at home resting after a supervisor drove him home. He was in the middle of his 10 p.m. – 8 a.m. patrol shift at the time of the accident and will be out of work for a while.