Florida man who deliberately ran over a 75-year-old Vietnam veteran had 'wanted to kill someone for months'

Justyn Pennell of Hudson was arrested after he called 911 and told dispatchers that he had intentionally hit and killed a man on Thursday, January 9


                            Florida man who deliberately ran over a 75-year-old Vietnam veteran had 'wanted to kill someone for months'
Justyn Pennell (Pasco County Sheriff's Office)

PASCO COUNTY, FLORIDA: A 21-year-old man was arrested after he admitted to deliberately hitting a 75-year-old Vietnam veteran because he was "looking for someone to run over so he could see what it's like to kill."

Justyn Pennell of Hudson was arrested around 3 pm on Thursday, January 9, by Pasco Sheriff's Office after the suspect called 911 and told dispatchers that he had intentionally hit and killed a man.

The 21-year-old was running errands when he spotted the victim walking alongside the road. He initially drove past the old man and then took a U-turn and aimed his vehicle directly at him, according to Sheriff Chris Nocco.

Although the 75-year-old scrambled to get out of the way of the approaching vehicle, he was hit and died at the scene of the incident, Tampa Bay Times reported.

Pennel confessed to his crime at the scene and in later interviews, and told deputies that he laughed at the fear he saw on the victim's face.

Nocco, during a press conference on Thursday, said: "While he's driving at his victim, he could see the look of fright on the victim's face. This man is absolutely evil."

Officials later revealed that the suspect had thoughts of killing someone for months and had already planned how he would do it. He reportedly left his home on the day of the incident with the intent to find someone to kill with his vehicle. 

"There are some cases that we hear of that absolutely... Even for us in law enforcement... That make us just realize and remind us that there is pure evil in the world," Nocco said.

There appears to be no relation between Pennell and the victim, according to deputies. 

"I have never worked a case where someone actually planned to go out and look for a victim. The act was not random, but the victim was a random victim," he added.

Pennel was charged with first-degree murder and is currently being held without bond at the Pasco County Jail. The investigation in the case is ongoing.

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