Uber passenger fights for life after getting punched by driver in St. Pete

AP Photo

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (WFLA) — An Uber passenger is fighting for his life after getting punched by his driver Thursday night.

St. Petersburg police said that driver Kavir O’Farril Diaz, 38, picked up Terry Lynn Kimball, 56, and the pair got into an argument over the route he was taking.

Investigators said Diaz pulled over to the Quick Pick Foods store on 58th Street North at 7:30 p.m. and they got into a physical fight. The driver punched Kimball, and he did not regain consciousness, police said.

“The driver decided to pull into the parking lot of this convenience store,” said Yolanda Fernandez, with the St. Petersburg Police Department. “They got out and then it turned physical, and right after that there was one punch and the victim ended up unconscious.”

Kimball is hospitalized with serious brain trauma. His injuries are considered life-threatening.

“I saw this guy just lying on the ground and some woman was pressing on his chest to bring him back,” said store patron Carlton Reid. He arrived shortly after the scuffle.

Peter Nemethy is Terry Kimball’s former landlord and never knew him as a hot-head.

“Face to face, he seemed like a really nice guy,” he said. “Very genuine, very conscientious.”

Investigators are speaking with witnesses and Diaz is cooperating.  He has not been charged at this time. The investigation continues.

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