Driver Accused of Running Over Man at Random in Pasco County


ARIPEKA -- Pasco County Sheriff Chris Nocco describes the crime as "pure evil."

Detectives say a 21-year-old man was looking for someone to kill, found a 75-year-old man using a walking stick, and deliberately ran him over Thursday afternoon.

According to Nocco, Justyn Pennell spotted the victim, a grandfather and Vietnam veteran at the intersection of Aripeka Road and Old Dixie Highway. Pennell then made a U-turn and drove straight at the victim. Nocco says Pennell described the terrified look on the man's face just before he was killed. "He actually laughed" when describing that look to detectives, Nocco said.

Pennell stayed at the scene and called 911. Nocco says the dispatcher got him to confess over the phone. Nocco says Pennell related that he had gone out looking for someone to kill.

While no name was released, Nocco describes the victim as a father, a grandfather, and a Vietnam veteran.

Nocco says several people took pictures of the scene and left. He's asking them to come forward.

Photo Credit: Pasco Sheriff's Office