Pinellas County Sheriff's deputies arrested a man Sunday after he crashed his vehicle into two pedestrians while playing a video game on his phone, then fled the scene.

  • Vincent Barone, 38, charged with two counts of leaving the scene of a crash
  • Pedestrians both sustained serious injuries
  • Barone said he fled the scene because he "panicked"

Investigators say Vincent Barone, 38, was traveling westbound on State Road 580 passing the intersection with County Road 1 when he veered off the roadway. His 2003 Honda Civic then struck the two pedestrians, who were standing on the sidewalk.

According to witnesses, Barone then fled the scene. A witness on a motorcycle followed Barone from the scene to a nearby convenience store, called 911 and detained Barone until deputies arrived.

Barone told deputies he accidentally hit the pedestrians because he was distracted from playing a game on his phone. He then left the scene of the crash because he panicked.

The pedestrians, Sheree Dean, 37, and Sherman Puckett, 29, were both seriously injured. They were both transported to Bayfront Medical Center. No other information on their current condition is available.

Investigators do not believe that speed or impairment were factors in the crash.

Barone was charged with two counts of leaving the scene of a crash involving serious bodily injury.

The investigation is ongoing.