MIDDLEBURG, Fla. – Witnesses have provided a better description of the vehicle that struck a Clay County Sheriff’s Office cruiser in Middleburg Thursday evening and kept going.
The driver, Sgt. Matt Magish, received minor injuries in the head-on collision about 8:15 p.m. on Blanding Boulevard at County Road 2018. He was released from a hospital early the next morning.
Investigators said airbags saved his life.
According to the Sheriff's Office, investigators are looking for a raised, dark blue F-250 extended cab pickup with oversized tires. It had a brush guard bumper over the grill and may have a two-tone paint job. It likely has damage to the front end on the passenger side.
The Florida Highway Patrol, which investigated the crash, said the pickup attempted to turn left from Blanding onto C.R. 218 and drive into the path of the cruiser.
Witnesses said the driver of the pickup got out in the middle of the intersection, checked his vehicle for damage, got back in the pickup and continued south on Blanding. They described the driver as a white man with an athletic build his late 20s or early 30s. He was wearing a baseball cap, dark shirt and blue jeans.
Magish is a 15-year veteran of law enforcement and has been hurt on the job once before.
As deputies and troopers work to find the hit-and-run driver, the Sheriff's Office said that airbags saved Magish from serious injures. Deputies said they are grateful for the good Samaritans who rushed to help him after the crash.
Crime Stoppers is offering a $3,000 for information leading to an arrest in the case. Anyone with information is asked to call FHP at 904-359-6572 or Crime Stoppers at 1-866-845-TIPS.
Anyone who has information about the crash or who has seen the pickup or knows the driver is asked to call 904-364-6512.