NW Florida man charged in 2 hit and runs, 1 head-on collision


North Carolina bicyclist critical, Kentucky woman in serious condition following DUI incident.

Panama City News Herald

A Northwest Florida man has been arrested in connection with a Tuesday morning hit and run of a bicyclist, according to the Florida Highway Patrol. The same man was later charged with a second hit and run following a head-on collision with another car. Both incidents were DUI related.

FHP reported the bicyclist, 34-year-old Cameron Kirkpatrick of Hendersonville, N.C., was crossing Inlet Bridge along U.S. 98 in Panama City Beach when a Mercury Marquis crossed onto the shoulder and struck the bike. Adwell was thrown from the bike, after which he crawled out of the path of traffic, FHP reported. He was wearing a helmet and was taken to a local hospital in critical condition.

The Marquis fled the scene, FHP reported, continuing east to an unknown location.

About three hours later, FHP reported the same vehicle was involved in another hit and run, this time with a vehicle in a parking lot near U.S. 98 and State 79.

Witnesses said the driver tried to flee again, at one point crossing the median of U.S. 98 and driving east into westbound traffic, where he collided head-on with a westbound Nissan Altima being driven by Veachel Adwell, 53, of Glasgow, Ky. Adwell was seriously injured in the collision and also was taken to a local hospital.

The driver of the Marquis was identified as Phillip Wright, 34, of Lynn Haven.

FHP initially reported alcohol was not believed to be a factor. However, between the two collisions, Wright ultimately was charged with felony leaving the scene with serious bodily injury, felony DUI with serious bodily injury, two charges of misdemeanor DUI with injuries, misdemeanor leaving the scene without injury, careless driving, failure to report an accident, failure to maintain lane of travel and driving on the wrong side of the roadway. FHP said additional charges are possible.