Donald Steimle, Ocala, Florida 76 year old Porsche driver intentionally hits construction worker during argument over lane closure during roadwork.
Why would I run over somebody? A 76-year-old Porsche driver has been accused of deliberately hitting a construction worker directing traffic in Florida during an argument over a lane closure, officials said.
Donald Steimle, of Ocala, was arrested Thursday and charged with felony aggravated battery with a deadly weapon just 90 minutes after he allegedly struck a worker with his Porsche Cayenne at a road construction site in Palm Coast.
The victim, identified only as Isaiah, told a Flagler County sheriff’s deputy he was working for a private company repaving a roadway in the area when he noticed Steimle’s 2021 black Porsche Cayenne, which has a price tag of about $67,000, ‘becoming impatient’ while stopped in traffic, ClickOrlando reported.
Instead of waiting for his turn to proceed, Steimle entered the only lane being used while a second lane was closed for road work, authorities said.
Isaiah said he flagged down the Porsche to get the driver to stop before he caused a head-on collision with another vehicle.
‘Why would I run over somebody?’
Steimle allegedly yelled at the construction worker standing in front of his car that he needed to make a left turn, then he ‘revved his engine and proceeded to lunge forward into (Isaiah), striking his legs and pushing him back against his will,’ according to a probable cause document.
The worker then told Steimle that he had struck him with the car, to which the 76 year old allegedly said that he ‘did not mean to’ before driving away.
The victim managed to snap a picture of the Porsche’s license plate and called 911.
A deputy who responded to the scene spoke to the victim’s two co-workers who corroborated his account.
Less than two hours later, the deputy tracked down Steimle at a sprawling home in Palm Coast and questioned him about the incident, as seen in a body camera video that was released by the sheriff’s office.
Steimle claimed that the traffic regulator ran in front of his car and hit it, and he denied striking the man with the vehicle.
When asked if it was his intention to hit the worker, the Porsche owner replied: ‘of course not… Why would I run over somebody?’
Steimle suggested that the worker may have been trying to ‘take advantage’ of him because he saw him ‘driving a nice car.’
Faces 15 years jail if convicted of charges against him
Steimle then slightly changed his story, saying it was possible ‘the car lunged a little bit,’ but he insisted that he did not hit the gas pedal with the intention of mowing down the victim.
Speaking to a woman sitting in the front yard during his arrest, Steimle called the victim ‘a looney.’
As he was being led away in handcuffs, a defiant Steimle exclaimed ‘what a joke!’
According to the sheriff’s office, the construction worker did not suffer life-threatening injuries during the incident.
‘Although no one enjoys waiting in road construction traffic, following the directions of traffic safety workers is necessary to ensure everyone’s safety,’ Flagler County Sheriff Rick Staly stated.
Steimle was released from jail after posting $2,500 bond. If convicted the 76-year-old could face up to 15 years in prison.