Aggravated Battery charge filed against driver who rammed victim near Hyde Park protest

A Second Degree Felony

Aggravated Battery charge filed against driver who rammed victim near Hyde Park protest
(Source: WALB)

TAMPA, Fla. (WWSB) - On Oct. 9, 2020, The Hillsborough State Attorney’s Office sent out a statement confirming the office’s completion of its review of the incident that took place on September 15, 2020 at 7:28 p.m. involving blocked traffic lanes and protestors.

The Hillsborough State Attorney’s Office filed a felony charge against Tatiana Munoz for Aggravated Battery with a Deadly Weapon after she rammed another vehicle with her car. The incident was captured on video from multiple angles.

“Ramming your car into someone else’s car in the name of protesting will not be tolerated. People who commit dangerous crimes are not protesting, and we intend to hold them accountable,” Hillsborough State Attorney Andrew Warren said.

The incident happened after protestors blocked traffic on S. Howard Ave. near W. Swann Ave. by gathering on foot and using their own vehicles to block the roadway. The victim attempted to drive slowly around the roadblock but was confronted by protestors. She called 911 multiple times, growing increasingly concerned with each call, and articulated the fear she was experiencing because of the incident. She eventually asked a 911 operator to stay on the phone with her.

After several minutes, a gap opened, and the victim attempted to drive forward slowly. As she began to move, an unidentified protestor opened the rear driver’s side door of the victim’s SUV. At the same time, Munoz, driving a white Kia, left the sidewalk where she had been parked, drove sideways across both lanes of Howard Ave., and intentionally used her vehicle to strike the victim’s vehicle. The impact damaged the driver’s side of the victim’s vehicle, just behind the rear door.

The charge against Munoz is Aggravated Battery with a Deadly Weapon, which is a second-degree felony. The victim’s name is not being released consistent with the rights of crime victims contained in Florida’s Constitution, commonly referred to as Marsy’s Law.

According to the Hillsborough State Attorney’s Office, following this collision, another person, Dezeray Rubinchik, 42, refused to step outside the cordoned-off crime scene while the Tampa Police Department investigated the crash and gathered evidence.

Officers instructed Rubinchik to leave the crime scene more than a dozen times over the span of several minutes to avoid interfering with their investigation. She repeatedly refused to comply with their instructions.

As a result, Rubinchik is now charged with Resisting an Officer without Violence, a misdemeanor.

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