A 5-year-old girl who was thrown from a Florida bridge on Thursday was alive before her father allegedly dropped her into the Tampa Bay, police said Friday.
While they offered no additional details, St. Petersburg, Fla., police released a statement on Friday saying "preliminary evidence" had confirmed that Phoebe Jonchuck was still alive when her father, John Jonchuck, dropped her from the Dick Misener Bridge during a confrontation with a police officer on Thursday morning.
Jonchuck, 25, has been charged with first-degree murder and several other offenses. He has refused an attorney and has not spoken to police.
Jonchuck started approaching the officer, who drew his gun, according to police. But Jonchuck then removed Phoebe from the passenger seat of the vehicle. He dropped her from the bridge and sped off seconds later, police said.
Police said they used a spike strip to stop him after he began racing the wrong way down a highway.
Jonchuck and the victim's mother, Michelle Kerr, had been together for nearly six years and police had responded to multiple domestic violence calls at their home, police said.
Swengros declined to speak with The Times.
Times staff writer Brittny Mejia contributed to this report.