5-year-old dies after being thrown off of bridge; dad arrested

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(CNN) — A 5-year-old Florida girl was killed after her father tossed her from a bridge from his car, police said Thursday.

As a St. Petersburg police officer was driving home just after midnight, he saw a car whiz past him, driving about 100 miles per hour, authorities said.

When the car neared the top of the Dick Misener Bridge, the driver stopped.

“The man reached into the back seat, grabbed his little girl, held her under the arms and then threw her over the railing and into water,” St. Petersburg police spokeswoman Yolanda Fernandez told CNN affiliate WFLA.

“The officer heard the splash and immediately tried to climb down underneath the bridge … to try to save her, but the current was very strong there.”

WFLA reports that it’s about a 62-foot drop to the water from that point on the bridge.

The father drove off but was later arrested in neighboring Manatee County.

The body of the girl was later recovered.

Police have charged John Jonchuck Jr, 25, with murder in the death of his daughter Phoebe. He is being held at the Pinellas County Jail.

Police have not disclosed a motive.

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2 comments

  • Diane

    Its sad that a father would do such a thing. I’m glad he was arrested & I hope he realizes what he had done & receives professional help.

  • SPAT

    THAT IS ONE SICK SUCKER !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! HE DESERVES TO HAVE THE SAME DONE TO HIM…UNTIL WE GET MORE PUNISHMENT LAWS TO THESE SICK INDIVIDUALS THEN THIS CONTINUE TO HAPPEN. HE WILL PROBABLY GET A YEAR IN PRISON OUT ON GOOD BEHAVIOR AND LATER WE WILL READ ABOUT HIM AGAIN :( OUR WORLD IS GOING TO HELL @!!!!!!!!!