Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes ofwebsite accessibilityMotorcyclists' family wants answers after death connected to police chase | WPEC
Close Alert

Motorcyclists' family wants answers after death connected to police chase

Robert Perone and his motorcycle (WPEC)
Robert Perone and his motorcycle (WPEC)
Facebook Share IconTwitter Share IconEmail Share Icon
Comment bubble

A Wellington man’s family is searching for answers after a fatal car accident, involving a police cruiser, took the life of Robert “Chino” Perone, 47, on August 10, 2019.

Perone’s motorcycle was struck by a Lauderhill Police Department cruiser, heading north on I-95 in Martin County, according to the Florida Highway Patrol (FHP). The Lauderhill cruiser was part of a police chase, pursuing a stolen Mercedes first spotted in Broward County.

One of those cruisers spotted a vehicle on the highway’s shoulder and when changing lanes to get closer to it, collided with the front of Perone’s motorcycle at roughly 2 a.m. Saturday, according to an FHP report.

Perone was pronounced dead about an hour later.

The pursuit was “terminated” after entering Palm Beach County but the Lauderhill cruisers continued north, according to a statement from the FHP. While heading north, the Lauderhill PD cruiser hit Perone’s bike, causing it to overturn several times and killed him, said the same statement.

The Lauderhill Police Department said it could not give comments or specifics on the crash, citing an ongoing internal investigation. A spokesperson for the department added an officer has been placed on paid leave, in connection with the crash investigation, which is standard practice.

“It’s hard, because, we can’t bring him back,” said Tony Perone, Robert’s brother, with tears in his eyes. “I know he’s in a better place.”

Tony was the last person to see his brother alive. The two were spending time together that evening. Tony went home before Robert, who said he would catch up and spend the night at his brother’s house.

“He said ‘no, go home...I’ll be behind you,’” Tony said.

The police chase began in Broward County. Police chased two young men allegedly in a stolen car, reportedly with a gun inside in the vehicle.

“With [the Lauderhill officer] being two jurisdictions removed from his home base, the questions is why he felt the need to go over there,” said Andrew Odza, who represents the Perone family alongside Alan Siegel, his partner at the firm Demand the Limits.

“The family wants answers,” Siegel added.

“I do believe some mistakes were made, yes,” said Angela Van Den Brink, Robert’s wife of four years. “He was just minding his own business, driving home.”

Robert’s name is tattooed on Angela’s ring finger.

Robert’s mother Juana said the family is moving forward. She recently went back to Robert’s crash site and recovered his leather driving vest, left at the scene by first responders.

“I got it, I'm not going to give it. That’s a treasure for me,” she said.

“Why him, why him,” said Angela added.

For Tony, who shared his brother’s love of motorcycles, he took some solace that Robert died doing what he loved.

JAY O'BRIEN: Does it make it easier or harder?
TONY PERONE: It puts me at peace. He always said he loved the motorcycles and that was his passion.

Comment bubble

Loading ...