March 20, 2016
Florida Deputy Sheriff, Massachusetts Native, Killed By Wrong Way Driver
Deputy John Kotfila, Jr. (center) pictured with his father John Kotfila, Sr. and his brother Michael Kotfila. (Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office)
A Florida sheriff’s deputy was killed after his car collided head-on with another vehicle early Saturday, authorities said.
John Robert Kotfila, Jr., 30, was a deputy at the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office. He had just left a hospital where he had been working on an investigation when his vehicle collided with the vehicle of a driver who was heading the wrong way on the Lee Roy Selmon Expressway.
Erik Thomas McBeth, 31, of Hudson, was identified as the other driver in the accident and died at Tampa General Hospital, The Tampa Tribune reported. He was heading west on an elevated highway that was dedicated to eastbound traffic at the time and slammed into Kotflia’s 2013 Dodge Charger at around 2:45 a.m. in Tampa.
Larry McKinnon, a Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office spokesman, said the investigation into the wreck is ongoing and a toxicology test will be conducted to determine whether drugs or alcohol played a part in the crash.
Authorities said Kotfila died at the hospital. He had worked with the agency for six years.
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According to The Tampa Tribune, Kotfila comes from a law enforcement family. John Kotfila, Sr. told the paper that his son’s grandfathers were both involved in police work. Kotfila Sr. himself is a sergeant with the Massachusetts State Police. His uncle is a deputy in Pinellas County, Fla.
“Both his grandfathers were in law enforcement,” Kotfila Sr. told the paper. Kotfila Jr’s grandfather on his mother’s side was a Massachusetts State Police lieutenant and his paternal grandfather served in the Holyoke, Mass. Police Department.
Kotfila, Jr's brother, Michael, is an officer in Falmouth.
Florida deputy killed after being hit by wrong way driver
Published March 13, 2016