Family of 3 identified as victims of fiery crash; driver denied bond

- Police have released the name of the driver who died in this week’s fiery crash on the Selmon Expressway, and believe they know the identities of the other two victims.

Police say the family of three, of Tampa, died in their white Hyundai after it was hit by an allegedly impaired driver and then crossed the median into oncoming traffic.

The Felipak family, 41-year-old Luiz, 29-year-old Rita, and 8-year-old Giorgia are believed to have died in that Hyundai. Their next of kin have been notified.

The driver police say lost control of her vehicle and set off the chain-reaction crash, meanwhile, was denied bond during her first appearance in court Saturday.

Amber Perera, 29, faces charges including DUI manslaughter, DUI with serious bodily injury, fleeing the scene of a crash involving death, and tampering with evidence.

The crash happened shortly after 4 p.m. on the Selmon Expressway just east of the Euclid Avenue entrance ramp.

Investigators said Perera was driving in the eastbound lanes attempting to pass at least two other vehicles. She struck the rear of a Hyundai occupied by three people. The Hyundai spun into the grass median and into the westbound lanes, where it was struck by two more vehicles before bursting into flames.

Perera fled the scene until her damaged car broke down about two miles from the scene. She was arrested after showing signs of impairment, according to police.

The three occupants of the Hyundai, including a child, were killed in the crash. Police have not publicly identified the victims.

Perera admitted to police to taking prescription medication prior to the crash, according to her arrest affidavit. The pills she took and the effect that they could have had on her is under investigation.

Perera's arrest affidavit states that she tried to hide vials of her blood after it was drawn at the hospital. She was caught with the blood vials in her underwear, and it prompted her to be charged with tampering with evidence. More blood was drawn, and the test results are pending.

Perera remains at the Hillsborough County Jail without bond.

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