Arrest made in death of Palmetto High football player
(BTLS Staff) PALMETTO – A 20-year-old Manatee County man is facing vehicular homicide charges in the death of a Palmetto High School football player.
Roberto Bentancourt is being held without bond at the Manatee County Jail. He is also charged with one cont of reckless driving, one count of leaving a crash scene involving death and one count of operating a motor vehicle without a valid driver’s license.
According to a Palmetto Police Department report officers were dispatched to the 1800 block of 14th Ave. West just before 5 pm Thursday in response to a ‘body in the road,’ call. When they arrived 18-year-old Kyle O’Halloran was deceased.
Witnesses told investigators they saw the victim hanging out of a the window of a Lincoln Town Car as it drove north along 14th Ave. West. A short time later O’Halloran fell onto the roadway, suffering fatal injuries in the process.
Detectives tracked down the vehicle and its occupants within a couple of hours of the incident. They were questioned about the course of events leading up to O’Halloran’s death.
The report states the victim got into an argument with the passengers of the Town Car and grabbed hold of the vehicle as it tried to drive away. The driver – later identified as Betancourt – deliberately accelerated as O’Halloran clung to the car.
When the deceased fell, the driver failed to stop to render aid and drove away.
Additional charges may be filed as the investigation continues.