Jail tip leads to arrest in 2017 deadly hit-and-run

Timothy Thompson arrested in Tennessee last month in case

St. Johns County Sheriff's Office booking photo of Timothy Thompson (left) and photo of James Allen Sr. (right)

ST. JOHNS COUNTY, Fla. – A man was arrested last month in Tennessee in connection with a 2017 deadly hit-and-run in St. Johns County, according to court documents. 

A tip from an inmate in the St. Johns County jail led to the arrest of Timothy Thompson, 31, in the case, an arrest warrant shows.

James Allen Sr., 81, was struck and killed by a hit-and-run driver while walking on U.S. 1 near the St. Augustine airport in January 2017, authorities said. 

His son told News4Jax that Allen Sr. was a veteran and avid fisher, as well as a valued member of his church and the community. He also said that Allen Sr. was having health problems and suffered from dementia.

According to the arrest report, Thompson struck Allen while driving north on U.S. 1, a passenger in the vehicle was jolted awake by the impact and Thompson told him he had hit a deer.

After dropping the passenger off, according to the report, Thompson hid his car.

A jail inmate who had been Thompson's cellmate in late 2017 told corrections officers he had information in the case. A Florida Highway Patrol investigator said he met with the inmate, who told him where to find Thompson's vehicle.

The vehicle was located and processed, and evidence developed by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement produced the arrest warrant for Thompson.

Thompson was booked Saturday into the St. Johns County jail on a charge of leaving the scene of a crash with a death. He remained in jail on $100,000 as of Tuesday afternoon, according to online jail records.