Police Briefs 2/21/19


Jax man dies in Fleming Island crash

FLEMING ISLAND – A 24-year-old Jacksonville man died Sunday in a single vehicle accident on Fleming Island, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.

FHP said Wayne Watson II was driving northbound on Town Center Boulevard near the intersection of Village Square Parkway when the crashed occurred at 7:39 p.m. on Feb. 17.

FHP said Watson was “traveling at a high rate of speed” when he lost control of the 2016 Kia Optima he was driving. His vehicle left the roadway, went to the outside shoulder and struck a tree.

He was pronounced dead at Baptist Clay on Fleming Island.

Insurance fraud arrest made

GREEN COVE SPRINGS – A Jacksonville man turned himself in to the Clay County Sheriff’s Office on Feb. 17 after learning a warrant had been issued for his arrest on allegations of insurance fraud.

According to the warrant, an investigation conducted by the Florida Department of Financial Services Bureau of Insurance Fraud found that Roman V. Fomenko, 31, of Jacksonville, filed a fraudulent insurance claim involving a used 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee.

Investigators found Fomenko purchased the Jeep on Aug. 16, 2018 from 1st Choice Auto Sales in Jacksonville for $9,100.

However, when Fomenko filed an insurance claim with his insurance carrier, GEICO, he claimed the vehicle was worth more than $20,000.

According to the warrant, Fomenko was allegedly in an accident in Brooks County, Georgia on July 7, 2018, although he was not assigned a title to the vehicle until Aug. 28, 2018. The Georgia law enforcement crash report said Fomenko rolled the vehicle once before it caught fire. On Aug. 25, 2018, he filed his claim with GEICO.

After being booked into the Clay County Jail, Fomenko was released after posting $2,503 bond.

One person dead in early morning fire

MIDDLEBURG – An early morning house fire resulted in the death of one of its residents, according to Clay County Fire Rescue.

The fire was reported to 911 at 2:42 a.m. on Feb. 14 at 2050 Candlewood Ct. in Middleburg Florida.

Initial reports from neighbors indicated that the mobile home was fully-involved and the caller told CCFR they did not know if someone was inside, according to a CCFR press release.

More than 20 firefighters responded to the blaze, including crews from the Clay Hill Station, which arrived in just 7 minutes. Crews found the mobile home fully involved with one fatality later found in the home. Officials did not release the name of the victim.

The Florida State Fire Marshalls Office responded to the scene and the cause is still under investigation.

No firefighters were injured during the suppression effort.

Motorcyclist dies in rush-hour crash

GREEN COVE SPRINGS – A 23-year-old Green Cove Springs man is dead following a rush-hour crash on U.S. Highway 17 near Oak Street.

The Florida Highway Patrol said Richard E. Rooker III was driving a 2005 Kawasaki Motorcycle when the crash occurred at 7:04 a.m. on Feb. 15.

FHP said James M. Owens, 54, also of Green Cove Springs, was driving in the right lane of U.S. 17 when Rooker came up behind him on the motorcycle. However, when Owens slowed down for traffic, Rooker was unable to stop in time. Rooker’s bike struck the rear of Owens’ 2012 Dodge Ram truck, which caused Rooker to be thrown into the roadway.

FHP said Rooker was pronounced deceased on scene.


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