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Five Children, Two Adults Injured in Early Morning Crash, Driver Arrested

WESLEY CHAPEL – An early morning crash on I-75 injured seven people, including five children, and resulted in one arrest.

According to the Florida Highway Patrol, a Buick Encore driven by 26-year-old Ashley Clairmonte of Tampa was traveling southbound in the inside lane, when she decided to stop her vehicle in the roadway. Moments later, a Chevy Tracker occupied by a 24-year-old female driver from Philadelphia and five children slammed into the rear of Clairmonte's vehicle. The impact caused the Buick Encore to overturn and then both vehicles came to rest in the outside lane. After the collision, Clairmonte fled the scene on foot into the tree line.

The driver of the Tracker suffered serious injuries, as did four girls ages 10, 6, 6, and 8, and a 1-year-old infant suffered critical injuries.

During the crash investigation, Clairmonte returned to the scene and was placed under arrest for DUI with Serious Injuries and leaving the scene of a crash with injuries.

According to officials, four of the children, including the infant, were not wearing seatbelts or properly secured in child seats.


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