PINELLAS COUNTY, Fla. – Detectives assigned to the Robbery-Homicide Unit are investigating a deputy-involved crash that resulted in the death of Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Michael J. Magli.
On February 17, 2021 at about 4:25 p.m., deputies assigned to the Patrol Operations Bureau were dispatched to the intersection of Forelock Road and East Lake Road in Tarpon Springs.
According to detectives, 33-year-old Robert Allen Holzaepfel was passed out behind the wheel at the red light. Rescue crews were first on scene and broke out a window to assess Holzaepfel.
Detectives say Holzaepfel fled the scene travelling Northbound on East Lake Road. He continued to drive recklessly travelling Eastbound on Keystone Road continuing to evade deputies.
Holzaepfel made a U-turn driving over a curb traveling back to East Lake Road where he stopped at the red light. Deputies attempted a traffic stop, however, he fled southbound on East Lake Road.
According to investigators, Deputy Magli was traveling Northbound on East Lake Road and stopped in the median to deploy a tire deflation device (Stop Sticks).
Deputy Magli was standing outside of his vehicle when Holzaepfel entered the median, lost control of his truck, and collided with Deputy Magli.
Deputy Magli was pinned under his patrol vehicle and was pronounced deceased on scene.
Deputy Magli has been with the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office since 2013 and was assigned to the Patrol Operations Bureau. He is survived by his wife, two young children, and his parents.
Wednesday night, 33-year-old Robert Allen Holzaepfel was transported the Sheriff’s Office North District Station located at 2496 Bayshore Boulevard where he was interviewed by detectives.
Detectives with the Robbery/Homicide Unit have charged Holzaepfel with the following:
First Degree Felony Murder, DUI Manslaughter, Driving While License Suspended or Revoked (Involving Death), Leaving the Scene of a Crash Involving Property Damage, Manatee County Violation of Probation (False Info to a Pawn Broker) Manatee County Violation of Probation (Trafficking in Stolen Property), and Aggravated Fleeing and Eluding.